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Friday morning Cardinal news and notes

Matt and Sophea Lyons are spreading the good word from Angkor Wat, Cambodia, where they hope to watch Big Red cry tomorrow afternoon. Just kidding. Big Red is cool. But beat WKU.

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I_medium Music City Bowl Spread Check: All over the place

I_medium Good Bull Hunting has all the info you need on Jake Hubenak, the man who will apparently be quarterbacking Texas A&M on Dec. 30.

I_medium Even with everything going on, Aggie players still seem to be pretty upbeat.

I_medium An update on Music City Bowl ticket sales...

Almost 50,000 tickets have been sold for the Dec. 30 Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl at Nissan Stadium, which will feature Texas A&M against Louisville.

The pace has not been far off from last year when the bowl pitted traditional powers Notre Dame and LSU. At the same point last year about 55,000 tickets had been sold.

Attendance for last year's game was 60,419. Average attendance over the first 17 years for the game is 55,031.

""We're just a shade under 50,000 tickets right now," Music City Bowl President and CEO Scott Ramsey said. We're on track to have a great crowd. Hopefully the weather will hold. Especially the Louisville folks will be able to make some last-minute decisions to come down for a couple of days and be a part of the game."

Louisville officials already have sold its allotment of 7,000 tickets and requested an additional 2,500.

Texas A&M has not sold all of its 7,500-ticket allotment.

"We're hopeful Texas A&M will bring their full allotment," Ramsey said. "If they do then we're going to have a great environment and we're going to have a great impact. Because from what we're seeing right now (Texas A&M) fans are going to be staying for several days and a lot of the Louisville fans are as well. On top of that there are day-trippers and locals, so we've got a good blend so far. If we get north of 50,000 we'll be really pleased."

I_medium Sheldon Rankins is the 20th overall selection in the latest NFL mock draft from ESPN's Todd McShay.

I_medium After making an official visit to U of L last weekend, apparently Tylin Oden will be back in town (or at least back in the state) this weekend.

I_medium Pat Forde likes Louisville in his bowl preview spectacular for Yahoo.

Dash Pick: Louisville 26, Texas A&M 24. The Cardinals have started three different QBs and have a team pass efficiency rating that ranks 64th nationally. The Aggies have started two QBs and played a third and have a team pass efficiency rating that ranks 76th. Neither unit has been dazzling, but advantage to the guy who has too many QBs (Petrino) over the guy who may have too few (Sumlin). Louisville true freshman dual-threat quarterback Lamar Jackson has been dangerous but needs to avoid turnovers and sacks.

I_medium The Louisville women's basketball team begins a two-game road swing tonight when it plays at Tennessee Tech in the Eblen Center at 6:30 p.m. Here's your preview.

I_medium If it's anything like last year, then this Hilltopper was talking about putting up a fight literally.

I_medium Sports Illustrated put Michigan State on the cover of its magazine this week and didn't get the name of the team's head coach right. They apologized.

I_medium Some thoughts on Bo Ryan's retirement from Luke Winn.

I_medium And some more from Louis Bien.

I_medium Kentucky offensive coordinator Shannon Dawson won't be back next year.

I_medium You best get your shit straight before game week gets here, WLKY.

I_medium If you didn't catch it, the C-J has the full transcript of Rick Pitino's post-Kennesaw State comments.

I_medium Louisville remains at No. 17 in the latest installment of Luke Winn's power rankings for Sports Illustrated.

I_medium My favorite Star Wars moment is when the CCBM is like, "it's a trap" and then it is, in fact, a trap.

I_medium The story of how two Euroleague teams ended a game intentionally trying not to score might be my favorite thing from Thursday.

I_medium For a limited time, you can get 25 percent off all orders with our friends over at Beaux Tied by using the promo code "SAVE25" at checkout.

I_medium The Kyler Murray saga at Texas A&M was weird and drama-filled way before this week. Here's a complete timeline.

I_medium Notre Dame coach Mike Brey turned a whole bunch of heads on Thursday by saying that the Fighting Irish are the most consistent program in the state of Indiana, "and it isn't close." Fans of the Hoosiers vehemently disagree. The two teams square off in the Crossroads Classic Saturday afternoon at 2.

I_medium Congratulations to Louisville volleyball seniors Katie George and Erin Fairs, who have been named AVCA Honorable Mention All-Americans by American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) on the 35th annual AVCA Division I All-America Teams.

I_medium More congratulations are in store for George, who this week accepted a gig to join the team over at WDRB.

I_medium This is bad ass.

Both Pryor and the shirt.

I_medium Louisville still stands at No. 12 in the Top 25 (and one) from CBS.

I_medium I know people tend to have strong opinions about BussFeed, but this 28 Pictures That Prove 2015 Wasn't A Completely Terrible Year post should have at least one or two things that will make you smile.

I_medium Not sure when bowl organizers are going to realize that 95% of all pregame bowl conflicts happen during dance-offs.

So, Utah-BYU is probably going to be appointment television on Saturday.

I_medium Louisville is reportedly setting its sights on landing an MLS franchise, which would be cool.

I_medium Nine hundred tickets have already been sold to the Music City Bowl pre-party in Nashville where we're going to be doing our show from the day of the game. General admission tickets are 15 bucks, and part of the proceeds from the event will go to the Petrino Family Foundation. Also, don't confuse this with the Alumni Association party which will also be taking place at the Wildhorse Saloon on the Tuesday night before the game.

For more information or to purchase tickets, go here.

I_medium Patches are on. Repeat: patches. are. on.

I_medium Louisville recruit Eric Mitchell has officially decommitted from Florida.

I_medium I've fielded a number of questions in recent weeks about Christmas specials (yes, both Donner and Santa from Rudolph are gigantic assholes), so here are my definitive top five ... specials, not movies:

1. A Garfield Christmas
2. A Claymation Christmas
3. A Charlie Brown Christmas
4. Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
5. Frosty the Snowman

The distance between No. 4 and No. 5 is substantial. Frosty allowing Karen to travel in a freezing box car with him to the North Pole sans any sort of adult supervision always horrified me.

You don't even want to know how long I could write about this.

I_medium Jon Rothstein gives Louisville a shout in his most recent college hoops roundup for CBS.

Louisville's fifth-year transfers are carrying the Cards

This is why the spring recruiting period has become so pivotal in college basketball.

Rick Pitino was set up to have a massive rebuilding season, but by landing two immediately eligible transfers in Damion Lee (Drexel) and Trey Lewis (Cleveland State) Louisville (8-1) will now have a real pulse heading into the ACC.

The duo of Lee and Lewis is currently averaging 32.3 points, 8.8 rebounds, and 4.7 assists while shooting a combined 50.8 percent, 89.0 percent from the foul line, and 40.1 percent from 3-point range.

Without these two guys, the Cardinals would finish in the bottom third of the ACC.

With them Louisville has a chance to crack the league's top-five along with North Carolina, Virginia, Duke, and Miami.

I_medium I will never get tired of "surprising walk-on with scholarship" stories/videos.

I_medium Quick reminder that Louisville will be accepting toy donations at the Yum Center before tomorrow's game.

I_medium Killed it.

I_medium Louisville sits at No. 10 in the latest Ken Pom rankings.

I_medium And finally, today's R&R will be coming to you live from Royal Jewelers in St. Matthews. The store is going to have a 20 percent off storewide sale and 40 percent off all Citizen watches only while we're there from three to six. Drop by, say hi, talk about Western Kentucky for a little bit. Or just listen online.