The C-J breaks down the top storylines for Louisville heading into spring practice.
The average Louisville player is worth $1,727,657.
Odds to win the 2016 NCAA Men's Basketball Championship
North Carolina 17/4
Texas A&M 20/1
Iowa State 28/1
Miami (Florida) 28/1
Notre Dame 33/1
The Minnesota Post says Gorgui Dieng is the Rodney Dangerfield of the NBA.
Every October, Dieng gets no -- at least insufficient -- respect. He entered the NBA as a late first-round pick, taken 21st overall, wiped out realistic playing time by the gaudy front court tandem of Kevin Love and Nikola Pekovic, the former a supposed MVP candidate on a supposed playoff contender, the latter just inked to a five-year, $60 million contract. Dieng was an elderly rookie (23 years old) who came late to basketball as a native of Senegal, playing for a coach, Adelman, bent on winning a ring before retirement and notoriously reluctant to provide on-the-job training to newbies. No one was surprised that Dieng logged a measly 205 minutes before the All-Star break.
But in February of that season, Pekovic, surprise surprise, was injured. Ditto backup center Ronny Turiaf. Dieng made the most of this opening, pushing his way into the starting lineup for the final 15 games of the season. He was named Western Conference Rookie of the Month for March and continued improving through 9 April contests, averaging 12 points, 11 rebounds and two blocks in 31 minutes per game. Despite logging only 818 minutes overall, he was named to the All NBA Rookie 2nd Team.
All that hubbub earned Dieng another spot on the second unit heading into his second season. Pekovic was back to claim the center position and Turiaf was retained to compete with Dieng as the backup. The Eyes on the Rise marketing campaign had featured a pair of power forwards in Thaddeus Young and Anthony Bennett and the plum of the Love trade, Andrew Wiggins, was justifiably hogging most of the hype.
Three months later I wrote a column, "The Indomitable Gorgui Dieng," claiming that "a case can be made that Dieng has been the Wolves most valuable performer during this first half of the season."
The best photos from the first week of the NCAA Tournament.
Brad Underwood is leaving Stephen F. Austin to take over for Travis Ford at Oklahoma State.
Holy sh-t, Anas is awesome.
New Albany sophomore sensation Romeo Langford got a standing ovation after dropping 43 points in three quarters in an Indiana state playoff game over the weekend.
Eric Crawford turns back the clock and looks at Louisville's first ever NCAA Tournament win.
The development of Lamar Jackson is the most important of the three things to watch for this spring with Louisville football.
1. Lamar Jackson's development: One of the biggest reasons why many are pegging the Cards as a darkhorse in the Atlantic is Jackson, who had a brilliant performance against Texas A&M in the bowl game. With Garrick McGee off to Illinois, quarterbacks coach Nick Petrino and new co-offensive coordinator Lonnie Galloway will take the lead in helping Jackson with his development going into a crucial sophomore season. Goal No. 1 in the spring is to work on his footwork and accuracy in the passing game.
"His understanding of defenses was a great improvement from the end of the season to how he played in the bowl game and you saw that happening in practice," coach Bobby Petrino said. "We just have to build on that. I want him to be able to have a lot of confidence in his accuracy and most of that for him starts with his footwork in the proper position and just being more consistent in throwing the ball with accuracy and timing and really growing up and maturing in the passing game."
The Louisville regional will be by far the most affordable of the four this weekend.
Senior Kaylin Morissette scored five goals and Cortnee Daley added four to lead the 6th-ranked Louisville lacrosse team to a 16-2 win over Coastal Carolina on Sunday. The Cards are back in action today against Cincinnati.
Most wins in consecutive NCAA Tournaments by a conference: 29 -- ACC 2015-2016 (so far), 28 -- Big Ten 1999-2000, 28 -- Big East 2008-2009.— Kelly Dickey (@RealCardGame) March 22, 2016
The Mick Cronin to UNLV talk continues to heat up.
Jamie Dixon is leaving Pitt for TCU, where he played in the '80s. We can talk about the move, the pressure on Dixon at Pitt, or who the Panthers' new administration might target next, or we can just watch this video of Dixon after hitting a buzzer-beater in 1986.
I choose the last option.
Florida State's Malik Beasley is headed to the NBA Draft.
Matt Norlander of CBS ranks the 16 teams remaining in the NCAA Tournament.
The Louisville baseball team dropped two out of three at Miami last weekend in what was a huge national series for both teams.
Louisville football previews its offensive line (video) for 2016.
The first tweets of some of the best college basketball players left in the tournament are quite entertaining.
Athon previews Louisville football's spring.
Pre-Spring Louisville Outlook in the ACC
Is Louisville ready to take the next step in the Atlantic Division? That's the big question for 2016 as spring ball opens in coach Bobby Petrino's third season back with the Cardinals. Of course, that's easier said than done with Florida State and Clemson in the same division. While Louisville doesn't need to finish ahead of the Seminoles or Tigers to have a good season, this team is certainly capable of pulling an upset against one of the league's top teams. The schedule isn't overwhelming. Outside of matchups against Florida State, Clemson and Houston, Louisville should be favored in its remaining games. With 18 starters back and a rising star at quarterback, nine wins in the regular season should be the expectation.