Spread Check (football): Louisville by 13.
Rick Pitino appeared on The Terry Meiners Show on WHAS radio tonight and stated that the team is dealing with some injuries that may alter its lineup. He later added that one player could miss a start, but that the injury is nothing serious.
At the risk of speculating, the safe money here is on Chris Jones, who said after last night's game that he thought he "re-aggravated" the stress fracture injury in his left shin that forced him to miss a few weeks during the summer.
Mark Story of the Lexington Herald-Leader says that at this point, Kentucky needs the Governor's Cup rivalry more than Louisville does.
However, now that U of L has a presence in one of the power five conferences, it no longer "needs" games with UK of the SEC to establish its pigskin legitimacy. Regular matchups with Florida State and Clemson and occasional meetings with the Miami Hurricanes and Notre Dame will serve just fine to authenticate Louisville's competition level.
Conversely, until UK shows the ability to win games against the (non-Vanderbilt) SEC East rivals it plays every year, Louisville stands as the one game annually on the Wildcats schedule that the Cats win with even a meager degree of frequency that moves the needle with UK fans.
Kentucky's 8-12 record against Louisville in the modern Governor's Cup may not sound like anything to brag about. It beats the heck out of 1-29, 0-28, 2-16, 2-13 and 0-3, though.
Those are, in order, the recent streaks produced by UK against SEC East rivals Tennessee, Florida, Georgia, South Carolina and Missouri.
Louisville-Notre Dame was the highest-rated home finale for the Fighting Irish since 2010.
Luke Winn's must-read power rankings for Sports Illustrated are back, and they have Louisville at No. 5.
I'm sure he's been at least a little bit frustrated over his lack of playing time recently, so you love to see this from Andrew Johnson.
They say on senior day you supposed to walk out with your family.. Well I need the whole card March to walk out with me #CardNation1Family— Andrew Johnson (@AJonefive) November 25, 2014
Louisville does not make the ESPN's ACC "Upset Watch" this week, but the two teams they need to lose (Georgia Tech and Clemson) and the one they need to win (Florida State) are both featured.
Congratulations to Cardinal goalkeeper Joachim Ball, who has been selected as a Capital One Academic All-American by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA). A second team Academic All-America honoree, Ball is the first Louisville player to earn Academic All-America accolades since Phil Edginton was tabbed as a First Team NSCAA Academic All-American in 2009.
Cardinals got a visit from one of the greatest athletes of all-time, Jackie Joyner-Kersee (@JJoynerKersee)! #L1C4 pic.twitter.com/cX99r0Pfgj— Louisville WBB (@UofLWBB) November 25, 2014
Your report from U of L soccer's emotional win over Saint Louis in the NCAA Tournament's round of 32 on Sunday.
The mother of four-star hoops recruit Thomas Bryant says that even if he gets a scholarship offer from Kentucky, he's probably not going to be making his way to Lexington.
"You have to give kudos to the man (Calipari) for being able to recruit like that," Linda said. "But I don't think that's the right place for my son. He's a young man who is still learning the game. He needs to be focused on that, not worrying which platoon he is on."
She also had some harsh words for Indiana and Syracuse and the off-the-court issues plaguing both programs. Overall, an interesting read. Recruiting's creepy.
Congrats to U of L women's star Sara Hammond on making both the Wooden Award and Wade Trophy watch lists.
Let's go ahead and not lose to Kentucky in anything this week...
SB Nation's One Foot Down (Notre Dame) reviews the loss to Louisville.
UK quarterback Patrick Towles wearing a blue jersey in practice. He said there's no red in the facility this week. pic.twitter.com/nTlvgV08iD— John Lewis WDRB (@JohnWDRB) November 25, 2014
As all his Grantland previews are, Mark Titus' look at the ACC is worthy of your attention.
Louisville could be just as good as Duke. The Cards have one of the best backcourts in the country (Chris Jones, Terry Rozier, and Wayne Blackshear) to go with the best big man in the country (Montrezl Harrell). Rick Pitino's teams are always a headache to play against because of their defensive pressure, but this group looks particularly fierce. Imagine trying to bring the ball up court and initiate your team's offense with Jones and Rozier crawling into your jock, Blackshear flying all over the court, Harrell jumping the passing lanes, and either Chinanu Onuaku or Mangok Mathiang pinning shots against the glass. And then after that, you have to try to prevent them from scoring? No thank you.
I do have some concerns with Louisville, though. The Cards don't have a ton of depth, which is unusual for Pitino's teams. Onuaku and Mathiang split minutes at center while Anton Gill, David Levitch, and Quentin Snider fill in on the perimeter. Those five had scored 181 career points combined before this season, and Mathiang accounts for 133 of those. This wouldn't matter too much for many other teams, but Louisville's press is its bread and butter. What happens when the Big Four get tired in a big game? Pitino will have to either call off the press (which is like Virginia suddenly deciding to play run-and-gun) or he'll have to throw inexperienced players into the fire. Also, who will take big shots for Louisville now that Russ Smith is gone? Who is going to shot-fake every time he touches the ball now that Luke Hancock is gone?4 Who is going to get called for illegal screens now that Stephan Van Treese is gone? Louisville will be able to hang with anyone in America as long as the Big Four can play, but one or two bench players will need to emerge for the Cardinals to make a run at the ACC crown.
Your first AP story of the week on Louisville/Kentucky is here.
I could watch this play by DeAngelo Brown a thousand times.
.@CardChronicle @DeBrown97 What men do! #GoCards https://t.co/J7MAXa7C8E— Ken Moser (@Onestopguy) November 23, 2014
Florida continues to try and sway U of L QB commit Lamar Jackson.
Louisville's Sweet 16 soccer match against UMBC on Sunday at 6 will be broadcast live on ESPN3. U of L also announced today that the first 250 students through the gates (with ID) will receive free admission on Sunday.
The legend of Ronnie Red continues to grow...
Chinanu Onuaku has been named one of 22 players on the watch list for the USBWA Wayman Tisdale Award, which is given annually to the best freshman in college basketball. Seems a little early for something like that, but whatevs.
The U of L women's team is back in action against Western Kentucky tonight. Here's your game preview from Bowling Green. You can watch the game, which tips at 7, on ESPN3.
Keith Taylor of The Winchester Sun says he was skeptical of the Louisville-Kentucky game being moved to the end of the year, but is re-thinking that stance now that the Cards and Cats are playing in a game where they both have so much at stake.
@cardchronicle Michael Dyer chuckin' me an L after the game behind the Irish kilt guys, LoZo approves pic.twitter.com/z2DWZD8TUL— NC (@3NickC) November 23, 2014
Probably because of the Ls. Or because of the winning. One of the two for sure.
And finally, a reminder that the new College Football Playoff Rankings will be released tonight at 7:15. We'll talk about how far (or if) Louisville climbed immediately after.