Happy College Football Eve, boys and girls. You all get to pick to unwrap one present. Don't pick the one that you already know is a Lamar Jackson 80-yard touchdown run. Save that one for the big day.
Voting is open for the LEO Reader's Choice Awards and I think we should vote Teddy Bridgewater for 50 categories like we did with Gorgui Dieng a few years back. Vote here.
Justin Marshall, who is a member of ESPN's Top 250 and the highest-rated player in Louisville's current 2017 class, talks to Scout about his Wednesday commitment.
"I have known for a while that it was going to be Louisville," said Marshall. "As soon as coach [Lonnie] Galloway took over the wide receivers at Louisville, I started feeling like Louisville was right for me.
"I knew coach Galloway from West Virginia, we have a great connection and it really goes back to when he was hired. I did not commit then, but that is really when Louisville was my favorite."
"I feel blessed to be in this position," said Marshall. "It has taken a lot to get here, so to be committed to Louisville, it feels great.
"I have been up there twice and I like the vibe there. It feels like home to me. I have family up there, I spent summers there growing up, and it feels like I am going back home.
"I relate to the people there, the coaches are great and I know it is a great program. It is like my second home there, so I know God has blessed me giving me this opportunity."
Marshall knows Petrino's history of putting great offenses together and scoring a lot of point. He is excited to play in that system and to be developed under coach Galloway.
"Coach Galloway is someone who can push me, make me better and he feels I can be great. He has compared me to former Louisville receiver DeVante Parker (NFL first round draft pick in 2015), and he said I could be special. I like coach Galloway as a person, as a coach and I know he can develop me as a player and as a man."
U of L soccer's Gabby Vincent has been named the NSCAA Player of the Week.
USA Today ranks every FBS team and has Louisville at No. 28. Charlotte is dead last at No. 128.
We're debuting a new CC/R&R weekly pick 'em contest tomorrow that is going to feature one area high school game per week, selected by the readers/listeners via a Twitter poll. Here are this week's options:
We're debuting a new weekly pick 'em contest tomorrow that will feature one H.S. game. You get to pick that game.— Mike Rutherford (@CardChronicle) August 31, 2016
If you want to write-in Doss/PRP or another game, you are welcome to do so.
The Big 12 is treating its expansion like a 16-year-old basketball recruit, announcing that it has cut its list of candidates for expansion. We should also keep in mind that all this is happening and there's not even any guarantee that the league is going to expand at all.
Jeff Brohm and Charlie Strong both make Pat Forde's list of the 25 most intriguing college football coaches for 2016.
David Hale gives one key stat for each ACC team heading into week one.
The percent of dropbacks under pressure last year when defenses didn't blitz, the second-worst rate by any Power 5 team. In other words, more than one-third of Lamar Jackson's plays resulted in a defender in his face, even when he wasn't facing a blitz. Much has been made of Jackson's progress as a passer this offseason, but no amount of playbook study is going to be enough to overcome another year of disastrous offensive line play.
Public Reactions to College Football Lines
College Football Playoff Championship odds % of money:
Ohio State 7%
Florida State 5%
Notre Dame 3%
Heaviest bet Win Totals Over:
Alabama over 9.5
Georgia over 9.5
Michigan over 10.5
***Note: Conference Championships and Bowl games do apply.
Heaviest bet Win Totals Under:
Auburn under 7.5
Boise State under 11
Mississippi under 9.5
***Note: Conference Championships and Bowl games do apply.
Heisman % of money:
Heaviest bet Player Props:
Brad Kaaya over 20.5 TD Passes
Josh Rosen over 24.5 TD Passes
Calvin Ridley over 900.5 receiving yards
Jabari Parker knows that the city of Chicago needs role models, and credit to him for stepping up.
Verne Lundquist says he's still a believer in Charlie Strong.
Also, a reminder that the women's team will be hosting UK Friday night at 7:30.
The folks over at Shakin' the Southland are breaking down Clemson/Auburn.
Jeff Brohm gets a mention from Pete Thamel as a coach who could be in line for a promotion after this season.
Florida State's Travis Rudolph just became one of my favorite non-Cards in college football.
Rivals has Lamar Jackson as the No. 3 quarterback in the ACC heading into week one.
Former (like, wayyyyy former) U of L commit DaMarcus Smith somehow still has college eligibility left and is playing for Kentucky Wesleyan this season. This will be Smith's fourth school in six years.
The U of L volleyball team's Active Ankle Challenge tournament this weekend has been moved to the KFC Yum Center.
The Crunch Zone examines college football rule changes for the upcoming season.
Sports Illustrated's bowl projections are the latest to make the sexy pick of Louisville playing Texas in the Russell Athletic Bowl.
Anonymous college hoops coaches say Oklahoma State's hiring of Brad Underwood was the best of the offseason. Tubby Smith (Memphis) and Rick Stansbury (Western Kentucky) also got some significant love.
ESPN breaks down what to watch for during the ACC's opening weekend.
How will the ACC fare against the SEC?
Three of the biggest Kickoff Week games come staggered on Saturday and Monday, as North Carolina faces Georgia in Atlanta, Clemson travels to Auburn, and Florida State faces Ole Miss on Labor Day in Orlando, Florida. Can the ACC make it 3-0 against the SEC? It is certainly possible, and it would make a big early-season impression on the rest of the nation. UNC-UGA looks to be the most difficult of these three games to forecast, but if the Tar Heels can make a Peach State statement and play the way they did during last season's 11-3 campaign, they could potentially make some noise in the playoff picture -- something they weren't able to do last season because of a Week 1 loss to South Carolina.
What U of L's rivals do on opening weekend might affect the Cards' 2016 season more than the team's own performance against Charlotte.
Alabama-USC is one of the most intriguing matchups of opening weekend, and here's a great look at how the Crimson Tide unseated the Trojans as the destination program for the nation's best high school players.
Your official week one tailgate mix from DJ K-Dogg is here.
UNC's Elijah Hood is a pretty awesome dude.
Sophomore wide receiver Devante Peete has been named U of L's special teams captain.
Charlotte is welcoming the challenge of opening their season on the road against a top 20 team.
"It's amazing to me how fast we've gone, and this kinda speaks to that," Lambert said during Tuesday's weekly news conference. "We're going into Year 4, and we're going on the road on a Thursday night. We've come a long way in a big hurry.
"It's going to be a tough challenge for us, but I like where our guys are. We've had a really good camp, and our guys have worked extremely hard since January. I know they're going to be excited to go up and play in that environment."
Thursday's game is not only Charlotte's first against a Top 25 team - the Cardinals are No. 19 in the Associated Press preseason poll - but it's only the team's second against a team from a Power 5 conference. The 49ers lost to SEC-member Kentucky 58-10 last November.
Power 5 conferences include the ACC, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-12 and the SEC.
"When you go play an SEC team, that's huge," Lambert said. "But this one is on a Thursday night to open the year, against a ranked team that has a lot of players back. Bobby Petrino has got Louisville back to where they want to be."
Hope to see you all out there.