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Tuesday afternoon Cardinal news and notes

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Just three Cardinal fans enjoying March in the Galapagos Islands.

I_medium Congratulations to former Cardinal Tony Williams, who led the Doss Dragons to the state championship game over the weekend, where they fell to Dunbar.

I_medium The C-J breaks down the top storylines for Louisville heading into spring practice.

I_medium A new look at that crazy Donovan Mitchell missed dunk/made shot in warmups.

I_medium The average Louisville player is worth $1,727,657.

I_medium Updated tournament odds:

Odds to win the 2016 NCAA Men's Basketball Championship

Kansas                                     7/2

North Carolina                           17/4

Virginia                                     23/4

Oklahoma                                 15/2

Oregon                                     12/1

Villanova                                   12/1

Duke                                        18/1

Indiana                                      20/1

Texas A&M                               20/1

Gonzaga                                   28/1

Iowa State                                 28/1

Maryland                                   28/1

Miami (Florida)                          28/1

Notre Dame                              33/1

Syracuse                                  33/1

Wisconsin                                 33/1

I_medium 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."

I_medium The best photos from the first week of the NCAA Tournament.

I_medium Brad Underwood is leaving Stephen F. Austin to take over for Travis Ford at Oklahoma State.

I_medium The U of L men were in the building on Sunday supporting the women's team.

Holy sh-t, Anas is awesome.

I_medium 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.

I_medium It's indescribably beautiful.

I_medium Eric Crawford turns back the clock and looks at Louisville's first ever NCAA Tournament win.

I_medium 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."

I_medium The Louisville regional will be by far the most affordable of the four this weekend.

I_medium 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.

I_medium The ACC is in the midst of a historically successful run.

I_medium The Mick Cronin to UNLV talk continues to heat up.

I_medium 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.

I_medium Florida State's Malik Beasley is headed to the NBA Draft.

I_medium Matt Norlander of CBS ranks the 16 teams remaining in the NCAA Tournament.

I_medium Plot twist: Louisville is back in the Sweet 16 for a fifth straight year.

I_medium The Louisville baseball team dropped two out of three at Miami last weekend in what was a huge national series for both teams.

I_medium This video should not have been made.

I_medium Louisville football previews its offensive line (video) for 2016.

I_medium The first tweets of some of the best college basketball players left in the tournament are quite entertaining.

I_medium Cards are out here stealing home again.

I_medium 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.

I_medium And finally, beat five months between now and football.