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U of L reaches deal with Southern Miss.

A familiar foe will grace the 2009 Louisville football schedule.

U of L announced Monday that it has come to an agreement with Southern Mississippi to play two games over the next four seasons. The Golden Eagles will come to Papa John's Cardinal Stadium on Oct. 10, 2009, and the Cards will return the favor in Hattiesburg on Sept. 29, 2012.

There was a time, of which we're not all that removed, when this was the rivalry in the world of Louisville football. While Miami '04 and Rutgers '06 certainly surpassed it in disappointment and depression, the "Mills Kills" game in '99 still stands alone as the most angry I've ever been after a U of L football game.

I understand and join fans like Tom Heiser in their worry that scheduling another C-USA team is taking a step back, but let's be real about this, the entire program is taking a step back, the only thing still to be decided is the size.

And now let's be even more real about this: the 2009 Louisville Cardinals are not going to be world beaters. An out-of-conference game at Utah is already on the schedule, and the conference slate features trips to Morgantown and Tampa. This program desperately needs the extra exposure and weeks of practice that come with a postseason, and the only way to obtain that is to win at least even or eight games.

Southern Miss. is still a fairly respectable name that the Cards will have a better chance of toppling than someone like, say, Texas Tech. And the whole history thing is a bonus.

Overall, this deal gets the Card Chronicle seal of approval. His name's Andre. Terrible movie.