—Spread check (football): Louisville by 13.
—Spread check (basketball): Louisville by 27.5.
—After taking care of No. 24 Michigan last night, the fifth-ranked Louisville women’s basketball team will host No. 10 Oregon Sunday in the women’s NIT championship game. The game will be broadcast nationally on CBS Sports Network.
—U of L refunded $419,000 to season ticket holders who asked for refunds following the firings of Rick Pitino and Tom Jurich. That seems like a large figure, but it’s actually only 315 seats ... which says something about how much it costs to regularly attend Louisville basketball games.
The University of Louisville, which has generated $116 million more in men's basketball revenues than any other school during the last decade, recently returned $419,166 to season ticket holders who sought refunds following the firings of men’s basketball coach Rick Pitino and athletic director Tom Jurich.
Athletic department spokesman Kenny Klein said Thursday that the university athletic department returned $239,566 in ticket revenue and $179,600 in additional donations required to purchase some tickets in premium locations to 126 individuals or businesses who controlled a total of 315 seats at the KFC Yum Center.
“At the time of the change in leadership, we were asked publicly if we were planning to offer a refund for tickets,” Klein said. “We said at that time we would discuss any questions or concerns with season ticket holders on an individual basis. We did just that and ultimately refunded those 315 tickets.”
Auburn University, which has suspended two players as a result of an FBI probe into bribery in college basketball, also offered refunds, but reportedly was able to re-sell more than 100 returned season tickets and maintain its sold-out status.
With more than twice Auburn’s seating capacity, the KFC Yum Center figures to be harder to fill. The crowd for Sunday’s season opener against George Mason was announced as 18,304 but actually closer to 10,000.
—It’s looking more and more like the “one-and-done” rule is about to become a thing of the past.
—JP Macura Gator Chomping at the Wisconsin crowd is the hard to understand college basketball troll I never knew I needed.
—North Carolina has announced a new six-year contract for athletic director Bubba Cunningham. Being able to beat the NCAA is a hell of an attribute for an AD these days.
—The Tar Heels are also looking into making changes to Kenan Stadium that would decrease capacity.
—The holiday budget of the average Louisvillian is $578, which is lower than the national average. So .... good, I guess? I don’t really know, I just got this in an email.
—Thoughts are with former U of L commit Courtney Ramey, whose senior season got off to a rough start yesterday.
My son suffered a rough injury tonight & broke his wrist in his high school jamboree game.. He is in surgery right now. I ask my prayer warriors to send a special prayer for my son Courtney Ramey. He's expected to make a full recovery in 6-8 weeks. Thanks in advance pic.twitter.com/tOs7R2XlD8— Terrell Ramey (@Rameybasketball) November 17, 2017
—Mark Titus’ college hoops power rankings for The Ringer is always an entertaining read.
—The staff over at TNIAAM all like Louisville to top Syracuse tomorrow.
Louisville 55, Syracuse 41
Lamar Jackson runs wild as the Orange simply can not keep up with the Cardinals offense. Dungey returns but just isn't good enough to win the game. The defense has no answer for the former heisman winner on either the ground or through the air.
Louisville 45, Syracuse 37
Without Eric Dungey I don't think the Orange can keep up with Lamar Jackson. I'd put the scores higher but the forecast of driving rain and wind would seem to be the only thing that can slow down these two offenses. The Syracuse defense is going to need to create some turnovers to keep the hopes for a bowl game alive.
Louisville 38, Syracuse 30
Before the forecast started turning for the worst, I had SU losing 45-40. But with the rain and all, I’ll knock it down somewhat. We know Lamar Jackson’s damn near impossible to slow down, but some precipitation might help. I’m willing to bet Syracuse’s defense looks better than it did last week, but even an improved group may not be able to keep things within reach for a hurting offense. If Dontae Strickland and Eric Dungey both can’t go, the run game could struggle (more than normal). I’m hoping at least one of them can take the field.
—Scout previews Louisville-Syracuse.
—The Cards are hosting the San Francisco Dons in the second round of the NCAA tournament Sunday, and if you’re a U of L student you can get into Lynn Stadium for free.
—Jake Lourim of the C-J gives three keys and a prediction for Louisville-Syracuse.
Prediction: Louisville 43, Syracuse 36
Take the over. This has the feel of a first-to-50, last-team-with-the-ball-wins sort of game. Fans of defensive slugfests should stay home.
Syracuse has all the pieces of a team that can hurt Louisville: an accurate quarterback, a no-huddle offense and a bevy of talented skill players. But the Orange had no answers for Wake Forest last week, and as Babers pointed out Wednesday, Jackson is better than Wake Forest’s John Wolford. These teams will get up and down the field all afternoon, but Jackson will make one more play at the end.
—I think every single game we’ve played this year has resulted in a “(Insert Opponent)’s Challenge: Containing LamarJackson” headline from the opposing media. Syracuse is no different.
—Brian Bowen and Deng Adel are both second round selections in the latest NBA mock draft from Sam Vecenie.
—Donovan is the best.
—The latest bowl projections from CBS have Louisville facing Michigan in the Pinstripe Bowl.
—Syracuse.com serves up five reasons why the Orange will upset Louisville and another five reasons they won’t.
—And finally, R&R is back from 3-5:30 today talking about tonight’s game against Omaha, tomorrow’s against Syracuse, and whether or not I went to see the Rickmobile last night.
I did. I went and saw the Rickmobile last night.