Another football season is quickly approaching Cards fans, and your favorite “guy who writes countdown posts over the summer about UofL football on Card Chronicle” author is back at it to inject insight, input, and…ummm….lackluster alliteration, into your daily routine. Prepare your body, mind, and heart for ‘The Cardinal Countdown’ [lightning strikes and a kick ass song starts playing. Probably some Metallica, or AC/DC, but Whitesnake is actually extremely underrated intro music. It’s all in your head at this point, you make the call]
Over the next 100 days I’ll take you on an excursion like nothing you’ve seen before (unless you’ve read these for the last four years, then, well, yeah,…you’ve seen this before) highlighting all 100+ players on the active UofL football roster. The goal is to provide a refresher on the athletes we have returning and maybe learn a thing or two about some of the young guns. I’ll cover their stats from last year, my expectations for that player in the upcoming season, and hopefully make a successful joke or three while shuffling through their tweets. It may be fun. [Keeping expectations low]
The Cardinal offseason has been exciting to say the least. Not often do you see a team have the same amount of turnover on the coaching staff as they do with their returning starters (lost 4 coaches, return 18/22 starters). The biggest coaching loss in my opinion was McGee, but as others have pointed out, Petrino will still be the play caller and the leader of the offensive unit. The talent is now emerging on that side of the ball as Bobby is bringing in his third recruiting class since returning to Louisville, and is starting to get the type of athlete that fits the ‘Bobby Ball’ system. With that said, this isn’t a 2006 Petrino offense. As most great coaches do, Petrino has adapted his offense over the years incorporating a few new tricks in his bag of…..well, tricks [dammit]. While I have no doubt that Petrino and company would love to see some Brohm-type passing numbers from Jackson this year, they realize that the strength of the QB position in 2016 includes the use of ones legs, and Jackson, along with Bolin and newcomer Jawon Pass, can all run for days. Just ask the last two opponents. "They supposed to be S-E-C".
The other item of note that many have glossed over since we closed the book on the 2015 season is the complete roster turnover of specialists. With John Wallace, Josh Appleby, and Will Gardner all departing we will have a new kicker, punter, and holder in 2016. Colin Holba, the long snapper, will be the only returning specialists this year and frankly that lack of in game experience scares the crap out of me. Even though a Miami or an Auburn isn’t waiting for us Game 1, we’ve seen just how important a field goal or field position battle can be in determining the outcome of a game *cough* Clemson *cough*. Over the summer and into the fall keep your eye on RS freshman Blaton Creque, a left footed kicker who’s recovering from an off-season basketball injury (how Kentucky of him), that many think may emerge as the starter by the end of fall camp. I’ll discuss him in more detail on Day 32. That’s called a tease, folks!
I’m looking forward to not only talking about each player this offseason but hopefully providing some more insight by showing real world examples of some of the things I point out, similar to my post game breakdowns I did of the Auburn and Clemson games last year. I look forward to reading the comments/feedback from everyone about their thoughts on each athlete and how he may impact the team this season.
Hope you’re ready, because ‘The Cardinal Countdown’ starts in 5...4...3…2…1…………. actually, the next post isn’t until tomorrow, but you should totally keep this count going in your head until right before you click on the link.
It’ll be awesome.