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Monday afternoon Cardinal news and notes

We've been watching you for a long time, 'Noles.

I_medium Spread check: Florida State by 3.

I_medium So let's say you wake up Saturday morning because the baby's crying or you just can't sleep because the image of Lamar Jackson treating FSU like Syracuse is just too much. You think to yourself, "I wonder if any of the fraternity/sorority kids are already tailgating at Old Cardinal, and if they are, I wonder what they would be saying if interviewed."

There's going to be live radio on at that very moment that will answer all of those questions.

This has never been done before in Louisville sports radio, but we're going to do it.

Starting at noon on Friday, if you want to hear nothing but fresh, live Louisville-Florida State talk up until kickoff at noon on Saturday, there's going to be a channel giving you that opportunity. Am I planning on going on for 15 minutes at 2:30 a.m. talk about how I really feel about Jameis Winston with the hope that the people listening won't say anything about it? It's a possibility.

I_medium Jimbo Fisher's initial thoughts on Louisville are here.

"I didn't really realize they were playing, happened to turn the TV on," Fisher said. "I live in my own little world sometimes, trying to get ready."


"They looked awesome," Fisher said. "Very athletic, got playmakers all over the field on offense, guys on defense can cover, run and rush, kicking game very solid.

"Bobby (Petrino) is a heck of a football coach. He does a great job. I mean, they're an excellent, excellent football team. They looked as sharp as anybody to me."

HE DIDN'T EVEN KNOW WE WERE PLAYING. Let the nobody respects us outrage begin.

I_medium Tomahawk Nation, a site you should be checking in on pretty consistently throughout this week, has the latest on star safety Derwin James' injury.

I_medium Bruce Feldman of Fox Sports updates his early Heisman rankings and has Lamar Jackson all the way up at No. 2.

2. Lamar Jackson, Louisville, QB

His numbers have been ridiculous and he has been spectacular. He's averaging 10 yards a carry and is third in the nation in rushing and has accounted for 13 TDs in less than two full games albeit against suspect defenses. And, he'd have thrown for probably additional 100 more yards the other night had his receivers not dropped so many passes. Things get a little more interesting with FSU on deck.

Stanford's Christian McCaffrey is No. 1.

I_medium Eric Wood has confirmed that he'll be in the house for the game on Saturday. With the Bills and Jets playing a Thursday night tilt, that should open the door for a handful of other former Cards to make the trip as well.

I_medium Louisville is No. 10 in both polls, and also the ESPN power rankings.

10. Louisville Cardinals (2-0)


Week 1 ranking: 12
Week 2 result: Defeated Syracuse 62-28

Cardinals quarterback Lamar Jackson announced himself as a Heisman Trophy candidate with five touchdowns -- four rushing -- and an ACC record 610 total yards in a 62-28 win over Syracuse. He can push his candidacy to another level if he can beat No. 3 Florida State and transform the preseason ACC and CFP picture.

FSU is No. 2 in those rankings.

I_medium The 8th-ranked Louisville field hockey team moved to 6-0 on the season with a 1-0 overtime win over Michigan State on Sunday. The 6-0 start is the best for the program since 1977.

I_medium Stephen Bailey's film review for examines how Louisville managed to have nine plays of 30 yards or more against the Orange last Friday.

I_medium If "Well, Actually Cardinal Baby" doesn't make it on at least one GameDay sign, we will have all failed.

I_medium Last time I'm going to say it: The game time is not changing. I'm not happy about it either, but that's the way it was, that's the way it is, and that's the way it's going to be for the rest of the week until Saturday.

I_medium It was always going to be crazy for Louisville to get GameDay, but to get it on a week like this is insane.

I_medium The U of L men's soccer team opened conference play with a 2-0 win over Pittsburgh. The team returns to action Tuesday night at home against Xavier.

I_medium Is this the biggest regular season game in the history of Louisville football? ESPN goes ahead and kicks off what is sure to be one of the many debates (we're not doing rush the field talk here) throughout the week.

This is a program in just its third year in the ACC, and only 12 years removed from being in Conference USA. When athletic director Tom Jurich was hired in 1997, he hired a program in shambles. Today, it is among the most profitable in the country, with one of the biggest budgets in the ACC.

It also is the third-best team in the conference, handling the transition to a power conference about as well as any program has navigated the move. Certainly better than West Virginia, which won a battle against Louisville for the final spot in the Big 12 back in 2012 when the Big East was disintegrating.

Since joining the Big 12 in 2013, West Virginia has posted a .525 winning percentage, with only one winning season in conference play. Since joining the ACC in 2014, Louisville has posted a .679 winning percentage, and a winning record in league play both season.

Louisville clearly made the right move, now in a much more stable conference. Big 12? Not so much. Today, the ACC has multiple playoff contenders. The Big 12 might not have any.

So the attention this week turns toward the Cards, chosen to host College GameDay over Oklahoma, Ole Miss, Stanford and Notre Dame -- schools with more pedigree and rather large games in their home stadiums on Saturday, too.

Pretty big deal indeed.

I_medium Meanwhile, at Kentucky, the fans are mailing bags of dicks to the UK defensive coordinator.

I_medium After back-to-back lackluster performances, Bill Connelly tries to figure out what's wrong with Clemson.

I_medium The U of L women's soccer team downed Belmont in overtime on Sunday at Lynn Stadium.

I_medium According to ESPN's FPI, Louisville, and not Clemson is now the toughest game on Florida State's schedule.

Turns out it is now No. 10 Louisville that presents the biggest challenge to an undefeated regular season for No. 2 Florida State, according to FPI. The Seminoles are given a 55 percent chance to win on the road, which is about 15 points less than two weeks ago. Fifth-ranked Clemson is given a 24 percent chance to beat FSU.

I_medium Lamar Jackson is No. 3 in Bleacher Report's early Heisman rankings.

I_medium Would college basketball free agency really be that bad?

I_medium Lukayus McNeil is feeling pretty confident as the week begins.

I_medium College football's second week was supposed to be boring, and it turned out to be awesome.

I_medium Via, Russ Yeast, the Louisville recruit who was once committed to Kentucky (and who is the son of UK legend Craig Yeast), will attend Louisville-Florida State this weekend.

I_medium Yes.

Also yes.

I_medium The Crunch Zone has a statistical analysis of Louisville-Syracuse.

I_medium Lamar Jackson is already in the national spotlight, but now he has an opportunity to take his biggest step forward yet on Saturday,

I_medium All week.

I_medium Stewart Mandel says Lamar Jackson is one of the people/teams in college football with the most to gain or lose in week three.

Lamar Jackson: Louisville's spectacular playmaker is the early leader for September Heisman winner, but to win the actual trophy he needs to shine against better teams than Charlotte and Syracuse. Jackson, who's accounted for 1,015 yards and 13 touchdowns, gets that chance Saturday when No. 2 Florida State comes to town.

Jackson can't win the Heisman with one game, even if he racks up another 500 yards and vanquishes the Seminoles -€” but he could lose it. That may sound harsh, but there's often considerable backlash when a guy starts getting mega-hype, then has a bad game. It'd be tough to recover from a three-interception day and/or an FSU blowout.

I_medium Has there ever been a song more synonymous with a U of L game than "We Ready" is with the '02 upset of FSU? Probably going to listen to it 300 times this week and hope to hear it about that many times inside PJCS on Saturday.

I_medium This little cartoon graphic from ESPN is really cool.

I_medium Lamar Jackson's numbers are ridiculous even though Louisville's wide receivers are dropping a higher percentage of passes (10.4%) than all but one other Power 5 conference team.

More from David Hale: Louisville has scored on 59% of its drives this season, 9th best in FBS, and FSU has scored on 63% of its drives this season, 4th best in FBS.

I_medium 247 Sports tries to put Lamar Jackson's ridiculous week two performance in context.

I_medium What a time to be alive .... as a Louisville fan.

I_medium The ESPN bowl projections now both have Louisville in the Orange Bowl, playing either Notre Dame or Texas A&M.

I_medium These are all good signs, but Phil's is probably the best.

I_medium The updated bowl projects from Fox Sports' Stewart Mandel still have Louisville playing Houston in the Cotton Bowl, which would be weird.

I_medium The Lions win a road game in the final seconds, Kentucky is the laughing stock of the college football world, and Bubba Watson just got left off the Ryder Cup team (for now). My September, 2016 so far has been like that Christmas where you were expecting one cool present and got flooded with a bunch of awesome stuff you didn't even ask for.

I_medium I don't exactly know what this is, but I like it.

I_medium Rick Pitino is in Orlando today watching Orlando Christian recruits Rondo Segu, CJ Walker and Nassir Little.

I_medium Louisville-Florida State will be the first game of the 2016 season featuring two top 10 teams.

I_medium Is 19-0 good?

I_mediumIs better by yourself than just about every other team in college football also good?

I_medium Wanna spend a portion of your Monday watching all 13 of Lamar Jackson's touchdowns? Of course you do.

I_medium ESPN's Ivan Maisel says you can trust Lamar Jackson, but not the rest of his team just yet.

I_medium You already know what play was featured prominently on the week 2 Heisman Highlight Reel (video).

I_medium The tears of unfathomable sadness.

I_medium Louisville's 845 yards against Syracuse were the most of any FBS team since 2013.

I_medium The New York Post says Lamar Jackson might be the star Louisville has been waiting for.

Jackson has looked more like Deshaun Watson, the Clemson quarterback and Heisman Trophy finalist who led the Tigers to the national championship game last year, than Watson himself.

Jackson opted to attend Louisville over a series of traditional powers, schools like Florida State, Ohio State and Georgia, because he was so impressed with the way Teddy Bridgewater, a South Floridian like himself, developed at Louisville into a second-round draft pick. And he studied film of Bridgewater this offseason, hoping to work on his throwing mechanics and poise in the pocket that limited him as a freshman.

So far, Jackson's completing 59.7 percent of his passes, up from 54.7 a year ago, and has only thrown one interception, after getting picked off eight times last season.

But before we truly anoint Jackson, he still has a lot of proving to do, starting Saturday against Florida State. Charlotte and Syracuse are bottom-feeders, programs Jackson should be able to carve up like he has. And as well as Louisville has looked, it did allow 28 points and 426 yards of offense to the Orange.

So far, two weeks, two transcendent performances, and plenty of reasons this year could be different for Louisville. Remember, Clemson couldn't get over the hump before Watson came. Louisville is hoping Lamar Jackson can do the same for them.

I_medium And finally, beat Florida State.