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Monday afternoon Cardinal news and notes

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Ryan McGee is cool with waiting a year to see her first Cardinal NCAA Tournament. She'd rather be standing for it anyway.

I_mediumgreat read from Jeff Greer on future Cardinal Tony Hicks.

On this particular Saturday, light beams through the windows high above the court, shining on the "P-E-N-N" on the bleachers. Hicks fixed his eyes on the court in front of him, perhaps with the 83 games he played with the Quakers running through his memory.

He repeats the line that comes up every time he thinks about the Palestra and all the history comes with it: "It is special here."

But he also knows there's more ahead - in a different place with lots of college basketball history, a place he'll come to know pretty soon.

"I'm ready to go now," Hicks said. "There's no looking back."

I_medium The ACC has netted a record $41,463,396 from the NCAA Tournament. That buys a lot of Bojangles.

I_medium Two professors from the U of L College of Arts and Sciences have withdrawn their motion for a vote of no-confidence in President James Ramsey because they felt it would be redundant.

Two A&S professors withdrew their motion for a vote of no-confidence in President James Ramsey from the next faculty assembly meeting agenda.

Patricia Gagne and Nancy Theriot, who made and seconded the motion March 25, withdrew the motion March 27. A survey showed around 75 percent of A&S faculty support a vote of no-confidence. Theriot said the support is enough to show A&S faculty's support of the vote.

"We decided a vote of the Assembly would be redundant," Theriot said.

The faculty assembly is the governing body of the College of Arts and Sciences, and does not have a direct say in the board of trustees' upcoming vote of no-confidence in Ramsey. The faculty senate is the governing body of faculty across all colleges. The senate's opinion helps faculty constituency trustee Pam Feldhoff decide her vote.

I_medium Mike Dunleavy Sr. is the new head coach at Tulane, which just completely blows my mind. If East Carolina hires Mike D'Antoni after next season, I'm going to start really wondering what the hell is going on in the AAC.

I_medium The ACC still rules college basketball.

I_medium Corey Ray is the man.

I_medium The negative headlines that we knew were going to come along with North Carolina's trip to the Final Four are here, but they're enjoying the unexpected company of the negative headlines attached to Syracuse's surprise appearance in Houston.

The Final Four matchups are now set. In one national semifinal, we have Villanova vs. Oklahoma. In the other, we have On Probation vs. Under Investigation.

Also known as the Outside Counsel Billable Hours Invitational, underwritten by Bond, Schoeneck & King. Also known as Questions 1 through 30 for NCAA president Mark Emmert, should he have his annual meeting with the media in Houston. Also known as Syracuse vs. North Carolina.

In college sports' ongoing game of scandal Russian Roulette, the chamber was destined to come up loaded at some point. And so we have this: a Final Four contest matching a team that played nine games without its coach this season as part of NCAA sanctions, against a program that has been under interminable investigation after what the school itself admits was systemic academic fraud that went on for nearly two decades.

If you buy the credo that makes college administrators cringe - "If You Ain't Cheatin', You Ain't Tryin' " - then you believe that a lot of stuff goes on at a lot of places. And by stuff I mean things that are not in line with the Amateurism Model, or the Do Honest Schoolwork Model, or the No Strippers In The Dorm Model. And eventually stuff gets discovered. And major programs are plunged into the NCAA investigative cycle.

Some of the scandal-scarred are big-time programs that can overcome turbulent times and still manage to make it into the marquee events. Thus we have the Orange and the Tar Heels, who punched their tickets to the Final Four on Sunday.

I_medium Final Four odds and ends from Mr. Bovada:

Odds to win the 2016 NCAA Men's Basketball Championship

North Carolina                           1/1

Villanova                                   11/4

Oklahoma                                 7/2

Syracuse                                  8/1

Exact finals matchup in the 2016 NCAA Championship

North Carolina vs Villanova        11/10

North Carolina vs Oklahoma       8/5

Syracuse vs Villanova               7/1

Syracuse vs Oklahoma              9/1

Odds to win Tournament MOP

Brice Johnson                           5/2

Josh Hart                                  4/1

Buddy Hield                              4/1

Joel Berry II                               7/1

Marcus Paige                            15/2

Kris Jenkins                              12/1

Ryan Arcidiacono                      14/1

Michael Gbinije                          14/1

Trevor Cooney                          33/1

Isaiah Cousins                           33/1

Malachi Richardson                   33/1

Jordan Woodard                       33/1

I_medium Chris Beard is leaving Arkansas-Little Rock to become the new head coach at UNLV, but don't think for a second that this news is going to stop the Kentucky fan who has spent the past two months responding to my tweets about U of L baseball with "how is Pitino going to do at UNLV next year?" or some slight variation. That man is on a mission, and he won't be derailed by minuscule details like the position being actually filled by someone other than Rick Pitino.

I_medium It appears the Louisville football team got some rings to commemorate their 2015 season.

I_medium Arizona freshman guard Justin Simon is transferring, and I suppose it's worth mentioning that Simon is a former high school teammate of Donovan Mitchell.

I_medium The University of Louisville men's swimming and diving team finished 11th to cap a successful meet at the 2016 NCAA Men's Swimming and Diving Championships at the McAuley Aquatic Center on the campus of Georgia Tech.

Texas won its second straight NCAA team title capturing a whopping 541.5 points followed by California (351), Florida (334), NC State (314), and Georgia (239.5) to round out the top-5. Alabama finished sixth with 225 points followed by Tennessee (188), Missouri (184), Indiana (180.5), and Auburn (167) to round out the top-10. The Cardinals received the second most points out of the ACC schools, trailing only NC State.

I_medium This is cool. I think.

I_medium Which mascots could destroy the teams they are named after: A study.

I_medium Garrick McGee took a sizable pay-cut to leave Louisville for Illinois.

I_medium The Boys & Girls Club of Kentuckiana has advanced to the "Philanthropic Four" of the Brackets for Good tournament, and now they need your held. Here's the 411:


Boys & Girls Clubs of Kentuckiana has advanced to the Philanthropic Four round of Brackets for Good! Will you be their sixth man and score the points needed to move them to the Championship Round? Brackets for Good is an annual, online, bracket-style fundraising tournament whereby participating nonprofit organizations compete to out fundraise their opponents, earn increased exposure, and have a chance to win $10,000 from a generous corporate sponsor, Bingham Greenebaum Doll. The crowd and Boys & Girls Clubs of Kentuckiana (BGCK) are calling your name and they need your points! The current round ends Tuesday, 3/29 at 7:59:59 p.m.

I_medium The Louisville men's track and field team was ranked 24th in the preseason edition of the USTFCCCA Outdoor Team Rankings, the organization announced last week. It is the first time the men’s team has been ranked in the Top 25 since Louisville finished the 2011 season ranked 25th.

I_medium Just take the damn picture, Grant. That Sprite money isn't impressing people anymore.

I_medium Four Cardinals scored multiple goals as the sixth-ranked Louisville lacrosse team defeated Virginia Tech 15-9 on Saturday afternoon at the UofL Lacrosse Stadium. The Cards improved to 11-1 on the season and 3-1 in ACC play.

I_medium Tickets for the April 19 baseball game between Louisville and Kentucky -- the only game at Jim Patterson Stadium without free admission this season -- are now on sale.

I_medium Some leather flashing from Sunday afternoon at The Patt.

I_medium Louisville's Myisha Hines-Allen is one of 15 finalists for the Wade Trophy.

I_medium Preston Brown says he knows he needs to "take charge" of the defense for the Buffalo Bills this season.

I_medium I hate how much closer I am to Boeheim than Wright.

I_medium A guy got arrested for never returning a VHS copy of "Freddy Got Fingered" that he rented in 2002.

This begs the question: What's the most embarrassing non-pornographic movie that you could have rented in 2002 and made national headlines for today? Corky Romano? Lara Croft: Tomb Raider? Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles? Seeing your name attached to any of these in a national news story would not be a great look.

I_medium The Russ Smith fan base contingent in Delaware grows ever day.

I_medium Former five-star recruit Taja Cole is transferring from Louisville.

I_medium Lots of hype for year two of Lorenzo Mauldin in New York.

I_medium Lamar Jackson is currently getting 100-1 Heisman Trophy odds.

I_medium LSU's Tim Quarterman is headed to the NBA Draft, which seems like a mistake.

I_medium This take from EDSBS on Kentucky is as spot on as anything you'll read this year.

KENTUCKY: A marriage based on the most solid of foundations - ignoring your own problems to talk tremendous shit about your brother and his wife, who you both hate and openly disparage as trashy at any and every opportunity even though they only live like an hour away and other people think they're mostly fine.

I_medium And finally, maybe the weirdest thing that's happened in an already weird 2016 was Syracuse winning my annual coin flip bracket, and then no fewer than 10 people tweeting me in the 48 hours afterward that the Orange had also won their coin flip brackets. Now, we're just two 'Cuse wins away from being even more freaked out than we already are.

If this happens, I will be making all life decisions based on coin flip from April 4 forward.