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Friday afternoon Cardinal news and notes

Ayyy, beat Duke.

I_medium Spread check: No line yet.

I_medium Jeff Greer compiles media picks for tomorrow's game, where pretty much everyone is picking Louisville to win.

I_medium Instead of using the RPI as its only metric, the NCAA Tournament Selection Committee appears to be finally moving in the direction of starting to include some more modern formulas like Ken Pom and the BPI. The bad news is that the proposed "aggregate metric" that would combine all these formulas, won't be a part of the selection process until 2018 at the earliest.

I_medium Jeff Ruby's has a nice promotion for Saturday's game:

I_medium St. X grad Justin Thomas started his 2017 PGA season with a win last week, and then continued it yesterday by becoming the youngest player ever to shoot 59.

I_medium When made head coach, I will bring this logo back.

I_medium Mark Titus' college hoops power rankings for The Ringer have Louisville at No. 11.

I_medium The Washington Post says that Governor Matt Bevin and the U of L Board of Trustees madness has put the school's accreditation in serious jeopardy. If U of L were to lose accreditation, it would mean -- among a number of things -- that Cardinal athletics would no longer be allowed to participate in the NCAA. That would be uncool.

I_medium Breaking: the SEC sucks at basketball.

I_medium The previews (video) the 2017 conference football season, which will feature a lot of new faces, but embrace the same expectations.

I_medium The Comeback has no Louisville games on its list of the 20 best college football games to look forward to for 2017.

I_medium This kid can do it all, folks.

I_medium Rick Bozich offers some advice to Louisville on how to handle Grayson Allen.

I_medium The C-J serves up the three biggest storylines in advance of Louisville-Duke.

I_medium A question as old as time itself.

I_medium Rodger Sherman has an imagined oral history of Ludacris performing the Georgia Dome acts that he discussed in "Fantasy."

I_medium The identical look in the eyes is tremendous.

I_medium Reid Forgrave's story on a former Iowa high school football player's battle with concussions is very much worth your time.

I_medium The latest NBC college hoops podcast discusses Louisville's national title hopes.

I_medium For all the talk surrounding Grayson Allen, there's no question that Luke Kennard has been Duke's best player this season.

After averaging 11.8 ppg. last season, the Franklin, Ohio, native has seen a significant increase in his scoring output, averaging 20.4 ppg. through the first 17 games of the 2016-17 campaign. Kennard's offensive prowess has been on full display this season, as he ranks among the top-five ACC players in numerous categories, including points per game (20.4 -€” 4th), field goal percentage (.532 -€” 4th), free-throw percentage (.863 -€” 5th), three-point field goals (2.47 -€” T-4th) and three-point field goal percentage (.477 -€” 3rd).

I_medium Georgia Tech beat Clemson last night, which is a bad, bad development for Brad Brownell. There are now seven ACC teams tied at 2-2 in league play, including Louisville, Duke, Virginia .... and Boston College and Georgia Tech.

I_medium Syd Bishop over at Never Nervous doesn't care that much about sports, but he still hates Christian Laettner.

I_medium Duke likely won't find any consistency off the court any time soon, but they're hoping a win over Louisville will provide some on it. It may take Grayson Allen assuming more of a scoring role for that to happen.

Although a more aggressive Allen could help Duke's offense, the junior will need to keep his head in another tough road environment—one that will berate him after his trip of Cardinal forward Ray Spalding at Cameron Indoor Stadium last season. Allen fouled out down the stretch of last season's visit to Louisville and picked up a late technical foul.

"I guess it's just trying to find that balance," Allen said following Duke's win against Georgia Tech. "Like I said, I can do a much better job of [controlling my physicality] when everything is just focused on what we're doing....not worrying about any foul calls, missed shots, physcial play, anything like that."

Through four ACC games, the Blue Devils are far from the team many envisioned when they began the season ranked No. 1 in the country.

And with almost half the season behind it, Duke must begin racking up key conference victories to avoid slipping any farther.

"With a young team, we just got to take our lumps and grow from it," senior Matt Jones said. "It's not the end all, be all right now. It's still January, so we just have to keep getting better and fighting."

I_medium recaps the FSU women's team's win over Louisville last night.

I_medium SB Nation's Chris Dobbertean currently projects that 10 ACC teams will make the NCAA Tournament.

I_medium Kevin Keatts has UNC-Wilmington rolling once again. The Seahawks are 16-2 after last night's demolition of William & Mary, and could wind up with a case for an at-large bid.

I_medium You probably shouldn't flip off the crowd of a team that you know is about to beat you down.

Just poor judgment. Only let the birds fly when you have a chance to win or when you've already won. Mike Deane taught me that.

I_medium NC State fans aren't exactly taking Mark Gottfried's latest stumbles in stride.

I_medium Louisville lost a local media icon last night. Here's WHAS' tribute to Milton Metz.

I_medium Want to get in the proper mindset for tomorrow's game? Re-watch Crum's Revenge fantastic video recapping last year's Yum Center win.

I_medium ESPN's Myron Medcalf likes the Cards in a squeaker tomorrow.

No. 7 Duke at No. 14 Louisville, noon ET Saturday, ESPN:

If only you could merge the two. Louisville's defense and Duke's offense. The Cardinals are ranked first in adjusted defensive efficiency and Duke is ranked eighth in adjusted offensive efficiency, per research.

Louisville held seven of its first 16 opponents under 60 points. And Duke's squad features four players -- Luke KennardHarry GilesJayson Tatum and Marques Bolden -- who are on Chad Ford's Big Board. Plus Grayson Allen is still a capable force.

Yet their respective flaws will affect the game. Without Amile Jefferson -- who could miss Saturday's meeting or play sparingly due to a foot injury -- Duke surrendered 88 points in a loss to Florida State earlier this week. The Blue Devils could fall behind in the ACC race if Jefferson misses multiple games with the ailment.

The Cardinals are unreliable shooters. They needed a more effective offense when they scored just 53 points against Virginia and 70 against Notre Dame, both losses. They've made just 47.9 of their shots inside the arc. Georgia Tech is the only team in the ACC that's less effective inside the 3-point line.

So what do you get when you match a talented offensive unit potentially missing its senior leader and a strong defensive unit that might fall behind if Duke gets hot? Well, a great offense usually earns the nod over a great defense in these scenarios. But Duke's challenges on the road will continue against a Louisville squad that defeated Kentucky at the KFC YUM! Center in December.

Prediction: Louisville 78, Duke 76

I_medium Want to win two lower-level tickets to the game tomorrow? House of Boom can help.

I_medium And finally, we have a huge Ramsey & Rutherford show lined up today. We'll preview tomorrow's monster game and also have new U of L defensive coordinator Peter Sirmon and new secondary coach Lorenzo Ward in studio where they'll talk publicly for the first time about their moves. You can listen here.