Charlotte gets a double-helping of N&N glory because she also got to meet Brendan McKay on the same day.
ESPN's C.L. Brown says Louisville is looking like a team built for a Final Four run in 2017-18.
Book now. Dates are going to fill up fast.
If Cody Zeller ever averages double-digit points in the NBA for a season, I'll sing at all of your weddings/kids' weddings for free.— Mike Rutherford (@CardChronicle) March 24, 2013
Fansided lists five things to watch for in tomorrow's spring game.
A lot of people wondered what the focus for Lamar Jackson would be heading into a season after he won the Heisman Trophy. Now we know.
Once Jackson returned from his travels, coach Bobby Petrino and the offensive staff had one sheet of paper waiting for him. On it, they listed seven areas in which they want Jackson to improve, based on film study from the 2016 season. A season, remember, in which Jackson finished with 1,571 yards rushing, 3,543 yards passing and 51 total touchdowns.
1. Improve on progression reads
2. Improve on sets in the pocket
3. Improve on seeing the defense and understanding coverages
4. Get better protected
5. Get better at throwing the ball away
6. Ball security
7. Get to 100 percent on run reads
There is another item not included on the list: Add snaps from under center back into the offense, including play-action from under center.
Jackson looked at the sheet, listened to his coaches and immediately went to work. Winning awards did nothing to dampen his competitive drive, nor his perfectionism. Jackson understands that to be the best quarterback, and to prepare himself for a future in the NFL, he needs to check everything off this list.
Petrino and his staff are trying to take Jackson to an even higher level, adding new layers to his already impressive repertoire. As a freshman, Jackson survived on his athleticism and instincts. Last season, he improved his knowledge of the playbook, technique and overall understanding of the offense and won the Heisman.
This season, the goal is for Jackson to evolve not physically, but mentally. Once Jackson understands defenses as well as he understands his own offense, he will be able to make checks at the line and make better decisions. That will lead to fewer sacks, improved accuracy and even better results. And that, in turn, will make him more ready for his NFL future.
"He was pretty darn good last year, but you're always working to improve," Petrino said. "I think if he can do all of this, it will be like the great Magic Johnson years -- one year he's the scorer, the next year he's dishing assists. He's making everyone around him better and that's really the goal.
"If he's distributing the ball, hitting the checkdowns, seeing this, making this check, it's going to make all of us better. Whether he'll ever have numbers like he did last year, I don't know that. Maybe he will, maybe he won't. But it will make the offense more efficient, which makes him better."
As expected, North Carolina's Justin Jackson has declared for the draft.
Updated 2018 national championship odds after the early round of draft declarations:
Odds to win the 2018 NCAA Men's Basketball Championship
Team 4/5/17 Current Odds (4/14/17)
Kentucky 9/1 10/1
Michigan State 20/1 10/1
Duke 14/1 12/1
Louisville 14/1 12/1
North Carolina 12/1 12/1
Gonzaga 14/1 14/1
Kansas 14/1 14/1
Villanova 14/1 14/1
Arizona 16/1 16/1
Florida 25/1 25/1
Indiana 22/1 25/1
Michigan 20/1 25/1
Wichita State 28/1 25/1
UCLA 25/1 25/1
Butler 28/1 28/1
Missouri 250/1 28/1
West Virginia 28/1 28/1
Virginia 33/1 33/1
Baylor 250/1 40/1
Florida State 33/1 40/1
Oklahoma 33/1 40/1
Oregon 33/1 40/1
Miami Florida 40/1 50/1
Notre Dame 40/1 50/1
St. Mary's CA 40/1 50/1
Purdue 50/1 50/1
USC 50/1 50/1
Alabama 66/1 66/1
Seton Hall 50/1 66/1
Cincinnati 75/1 75/1
Connecticut 66/1 75/1
Creighton 75/1 75/1
Iowa State 66/1 75/1
Minnesota 75/1 75/1
SMU 75/1 75/1
Vanderbilt 66/1 75/1
Wisconsin 66/1 75/1
Xavier 66/1 75/1
Arkansas 100/1 100/1
Illinois 100/1 100/1
Marquette 100/1 100/1
Maryland 100/1 100/1
Northwestern 100/1 100/1
San Diego State 100/1 100/1
South Carolina 100/1 100/1
Syracuse 100/1 100/1
Texas A&M 100/1 100/1
Utah 100/1 100/1
VCU 100/1 100/1
Virginia Tech 300/1 100/1
Georgetown 150/1 150/1
BYU 50/1 200/1
Ohio State 150/1 200/1
Providence 150/1 200/1
Stanford 300/1 200/1
TCU 250/1 200/1
Arizona State 250/1 250/1
Auburn 250/1 250/1
California 250/1 250/1
Clemson 250/1 250/1
Colorado 250/1 250/1
Dayton 250/1 250/1
Georgia 250/1 250/1
Iowa 250/1 250/1
Kansas State 250/1 250/1
Mississippi 250/1 250/1
Mississippi State 250/1 250/1
Rhode Island 250/1 250/1
Tennessee 250/1 250/1
Texas 250/1 250/1
Oklahoma State 250/1 300/1
Penn State 300/1 300/1
Texas Tech 300/1 300/1
Wake Forest 300/1 300/1
Boise State 500/1 500/1
Boston College 500/1 500/1
Colorado State 500/1 500/1
Harvard 500/1 500/1
LSU 500/1 500/1
Memphis 500/1 500/1
NC State 300/1 500/1
Northern Iowa 500/1 500/1
Oregon State 500/1 500/1
Pittsburgh 300/1 500/1
UNLV 500/1 500/1
Washington State 500/1 500/1
Washington 500/1 500/1
Mount St. Mary's 1000/1 Off the Board
Saint Joseph's 1000/1 Off the Board
Temple 1000/1 Off the Board
Rough nine days for Mount St. Mary's apparently.
Let hype video season begin.
The U of L spirit groups won four of the five possible national championships in Daytona. That makes (unofficially) ten billion national titles for Todd Sharp's troops.
One of the best, if not the best, pieces of airport signage for a college athletics brand. Prime spot. Always fresh & well done creative. pic.twitter.com/0UcBkUKVpG— D1.ticker (@D1ticker) April 14, 2017
Jared Shanker's latest ACC mailbag for ESPN talks which Louisville team we should expect to see in 2017. Jared
Shanker: I won't cop out and settle for an answer in between those two. Given the options, I'd go with the team that limped to an 0-3 finish. The Cardinals are clearly a better team than what they showed in that ambush at Houston and stodgy performance against LSU, but they don't strike me as a team in 2017 that will push for the playoff. In January I labeled them a pretender because there are concerns about the pass protection and defense. Will a new O-line coach help? Will a new defensive coordinator (coaching several new starters) hurt? Lamar Jackson is Houdini holding a football, but he might not escape a second straight season without injury if he's sacked 47 times again.
The NCAA's D-I council voted for three big changes to college football today. They are:
Eli Rogers posted a pretty cool goodbye message/story to Dan Rooney on Instagram.
Athlon has Louisville at No. 8 in its very early college hoops rankings for next season. I believe that's the lowest I've seen.
This might be the worst call I've seen at a sporting event this year, and it was a huge one.
Here are a few looks at the out call at 2nd base that would've given WKU baseball the win. Out or safe? I'll let you decide. pic.twitter.com/RJJ2JsCpJZ— Dominique Yates (@RealDYates) April 14, 2017
Matt Norlander grades the college hoops coaching hires of the past year and from four years ago.
Jon Bois' chart party is always worth your time.
SVP casually funding Maryland's student sports radio station is awesome.
Jeff Greer continues his freshman profile series with a closer look at Lance Thomas.
Jalen Rose says the newly retired Steve Fisher needs more love (and also takes some shots at Chris Webber).
Justin Thomas can drive the ball longer and more accurately with a putt-putt club than I can with a driver.
The U of L men's tennis team will take on Clemson and No. 1 Wake Forest this weekend.
As expected, the John Calipari 30 for 30 was essentially a two-hour recruiting infomercial.
Still, there was this at the beginning ....
Just now checking this out. Happy to set the stage for Bobby Knight. pic.twitter.com/LJJPEYm1w3— Mike Rutherford (@CardChronicle) April 14, 2017
Oscar campaign starts now. You're all invited as my dates.
Pat Forde looks at the 12 most intriguing (or confusing) hires of the college basketball offseason so far.
Blast from the past.
NC State's Maverick Rowan tells me he will enter the 2017 NBA Draft, but won't hire an agent.— Jon Rothstein (@JonRothstein) April 13, 2017
First Team All-ACC performer John Collins has also declared for the draft, and will sign with an agent.
Here's an update on the injured Wright State basketball player story from a couple days ago.
Wanted to give you a quick update here. In just a few days, nearly $70K has been raised to help Ryan Custer in his recovery. More information, and a video from Scott Nagy, the head Men's Basketball coach at Wright State, here: https://www.gofundme.com/ryancuster33recovery.
According to a new post from Ryan's dad on a Facebook page created to help in his recovery, Ryan is ready to fight, mouthing the words, "I Got This." Here's a link to the page: https://www.facebook.com/Ryan-Custers-Recovery-Care-Page-1663875643922198/.
Steve Jones says highly-touted freshman DB C.J. Avery is already making an impact for U of L football.
Draft stock is up for Louisville's Keith Towbridge according to one service.
Bobby Petrino was on Sirius XM's College Sports Nation program yesterday. You can hear his interview here.
A reminder that you can see Malik Williams, Darius Perry and Lance Thomas all in action tonight at the KDF's "Night of the Future Stars" at IUS starting at 7 p.m.
And finally, today gives us new Kendrick Lamar, new Mystery Science Theater 3000, and this video:
Feel good Friday.