—Congrats to Asia Durr on being named espnW’s national player of the week.
—Deng Adel’s teammates say the Cardinals’ leading scorer is finally getting back to doing what he does best.
“(He played like) the NBA pro that he is,” redshirt sophomore guard Ryan McMahon said. “He’s just an incredible player. He does so many things that people don’t realize and that don’t show up on the stat sheet and that help your team win. Loose balls, everything like that, playing good defense. He’s the complete all-around player that you want on your team.”
It hasn’t always felt like that this season. Adel started hot, averaging 17.2 points and 5.2 rebounds over the first six games while shooting 50.7 percent. His fallaway jump shot against Seton Hall tied a tight game in the closing moments, only to see Seton Hall run down and score the game-winning basket.
His highly efficient play tapered off from there, and while he continued posting double-digit scoring totals, Adel’s turnovers and at-times-questionable shot selection made it seem like he wasn’t at his best. He mentioned his frustrations with his turnovers on Saturday, too.
At Florida State and against Virginia Tech, though, Adel dusted off his old self and brought him back. He was persistent and assertive in both games, but he patiently probed and prodded. He looked for openings and attacked when the time was right, but he also passed out of situations where he previously might have tried to shoot.
”He was playing basketball, finally,” senior center Anas Mahmoud said. “He gets in habits sometimes. He’s trying to be the man, trying to be the hero sometimes. When he gets caught in those moments, I think he sometimes forces it too much.
”(On Saturday) he played free. He shot the ball when he needed to. He went to work when he needed to. Whenever he didn’t have it, he passed it out. That’s what we need more often from him, to pick and choose when to go to work.”
—Bobby Petrino has hired Ryan Beard as his new safeties coach. Beard, like defensive line coach L.D. Scott, is Petrino’s son-in-law. Beard has previously coached at U of L and Western Kentucky.
—Keith Jackson, the voice of college football for many including myself, passed away over the weekend. Here are six memories of the legendary broadcaster.
—Some sights and sounds from Saturday’s win at the Yum Center.
The Cards picked up another conference W yesterday to move to 3-1 in the ACC. ⏪ some of the moments . pic.twitter.com/YG01qHFb10— Louisville Basketball (@LouisvilleMBB) January 14, 2018
—RIP to Dale Owens, a longtime figure in the world of professional sports in this city who served as the GM for both the Louisville Redbirds and Bats. Dale helped launch the revitalization of downtown by championing the construction of Louisville Slugger Field. He will be missed.
—Jonathan Greenard is officially returning to U of L for the 2018 season.
—Former Louisville commit Courtney Ramey says he’s still considering Louisville, but isn’t sure whether he’ll use one of his official visits on U of L. Ramey is set to visit Villanova and UCLA next month.
—Louisville moves into Andy Katz’s Power 36 rankings at No. 28.
28. Louisville (NR): Well, now, look who is back in the Power 36. The Cardinals had an impressive week by knocking off Florida State on the road by four and then beating Virginia Tech by eight. David Padgett has his feet firmly planted as the head coach. He’s still the interim, but like freshmen who are well into their first season, they have had enough experience to handle adverse situations. The Cardinals will get two more tests this week at Notre Dame Tuesday and then against Boston College Sunday.
—Louisville is an 8 seed taking on Marquette in the latest Bracketology from NBC.
—The NCAA is reportedly considering a new rule that would allow players to transfer one time and still be immediately eligible.
You’ve had many priceless moments...You blessed many with the gift of your time! These kids were so excited for their opportunity to be close to you. Wish you nothing but God’s best in the future. ✊ #8 pic.twitter.com/xY9hKwn43N— LawrenceDWilliamsII (@LawrenceDWii) January 14, 2018
—After it had initially been announced as canceled, the boys basketball LIT semifinals and final will be played this weekend at Manual High School. It would have felt wrong for this tournament not to be completed for the first time in nearly 80 years.
—I can sort of understand being a rival fan and wanting Lamar’s autograph to sell, has as a keepsake or give as a gift. But wearing your rival gear to said signing makes you a pathetic loser.
—Quentin Richardson’s letter to his 12-year-old self is a wild read.
—Jeff Greer lays out three things to watch when Louisville takes on Notre Dame tomorrow night.
Anfernee Simons dropped a smooth 29 points and 5 boards in IMG's win over Vermont Academy. Oh, and he did it in front of over a dozen NBA Scouts as he is eligible for the 2018 NBA Draft. @AnferneeSimons #HHClassic pic.twitter.com/o5xPhaVloS— SLAM HS Hoops (@SLAMonline_HS) January 14, 2018
—Boise State coach Leon Rice literally crossed the Boise River to keep a promise to fans after they sold out the arena this weekend. It was cold.
—Rick Pitino spent part of his weekend watching Mick Cronin’s Bearcats take care of USF in Tampa.
Former Louisville coach/Mick Cronin mentor Rick Pitino addressed #UC team in postgame locker room tonight, after 78-55 win here at USF. Here, Pitino and Jarron Cumberland chat briefly outside locker room. pic.twitter.com/JFUaQNNut8— Tom Groeschen (@TomGroeschen) January 14, 2018
—Kenny Payne says the speculation that he could be Louisville’s next head coach is unfair to David Padgett ... or at least it was 10 days ago when it was actually happening.
“Louisville changed my life,” Payne said. “As a young kid coming from Mississippi to be able to be on the national championship team and learn basketball from a Hall of Fame coach (Denny Crum), I have love for Louisville. But I have an obligation and love for the University of Kentucky and the guys sitting in this locker room.”
Any speculation about the future, Payne says, is unfair to Louisville interim coach David Padgett and the players, who were tasked with a “tough situation” this season after coach Rick Pitino was fired.
”There’s veteran coaches that can’t do what he’s doing right now,” Payne said of Padgett, who has guided Louisville to a 13-4 record. “Just put together and get that group to believe, and there’s going to be some adversity. There’s going to be some ups and downs in every season. He’s done a great job. It’s unfair to him to have any coach mentioned or any situation mentioned other than do the best job for that school right now. They should stay in the moment and try to win as many games as they can. That’s the best answer I can give you.”
—Louisville native, and current Colorado athletics administrator, Ceal Barry is a finalist for the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame.
—This is pretty awesome footage.
—Louisville’s Mo Thiaw is hoping to complete a long journey by impressing at the MLS Combine.
—Eli Rogers went down in yesterday’s playoff loss to Jacksonville, but he’s not staying down.
Minor set back. I always bounce back... in a MAJOR way. I thank God for blessing me to see another successful season. I’ve grown from lessons and have been a blessing to many... I Love this team and this organization.— Eli Rogers (@__bELIeve17) January 14, 2018
—Obviously Teddy Bridgewater would like to be back playing in the NFL playoffs, but he’s still taking on a role as a leader for the Vikings during these times.
—Like the U of L women’s team, the U of L student managers are also unbeaten and ranked in the top five.
TOP 10 ALERT: Friday #ManagerGames rankings are here. The 49ers remain on top and @VTMBBManagers crack the top 10 for the first time this season.— Manager Games (@ManagerGames_) January 12, 2018
Check out the entire rankings here: https://t.co/teRhAh5Omq pic.twitter.com/tBKTvnETF8
—The Bellarmine men’s team fell from that elite local group over the weekend after losing to Wisconsin-Parkside. College basketball’s longest home winning streak, however, is still in tact.
—Jim Boeheim’s reaction to starting 1-4 in the ACC?
“It’s five games. Who cares?’’ Boeheim said in answer to a question about his team’s slow start to ACC play following a gut-wrenching 101-90 doube-overtime loss at Florida State on Saturday. “You’ve got 13 games to go. Anything can happen. Who cares? That doesn’t matter. You play the next game.’’
Whereas Syracuse’s one win in five ACC contests might result in gloom-and-doom in some corners, Boeheim saw a silver lining in those storm clouds above the Orange.
Syracuse’s stumble to start league play comes after three road losses and the frittering away of a last possession in a 51-49 home loss to undermanned Notre Dame last weekend.
”We knew we had three road games (in first five) and we let a game get away at home,’’ Boeheim said. “Three road games in this league, we’re underdogs in all three of them anyway. We knew it was a hard start. We needed to protect home court (against Notre Dame) and then we didn’t. We had a chance here and at Wake Forest to win both games. If we were out of those games and if we were losing by eight or 10, I’d be really concerned. We were right there.’”
I love it. “Who cares? It’s one year in the NIT. Who cares? People live long lives now. Who cares if you go to the NIT one time.”
I will now be using the “Who Cares Defense” for everything bad that I am a part of.
—One would think that this is a good sign for Javian Hawkins signing with Louisville next month.
Lil ♂️ but I’m ️ig Dawg pic.twitter.com/lQ6TO58qya— ƱPLAY.STATIONƱ (@JavianHawkins) January 15, 2018
The U of L RB/ATH commit who has been heavily courted by Nebraska in recent weeks visited Louisville over the weekend.
—Josh Pastner has filed a civil suit against the former friend who blew the whistle on him and Georgia Tech in part because Pastner didn’t call to wish him a happy birthday.
—Our “down year” is still better than your “sign of progress.”
College football doesn't have state championships, but we can still argue about TEAM OF THE YEAR in all 50 states and D.C.— SB Nation CFB (@SBNationCFB) January 12, 2018
(Made a few fixes in here ) https://t.co/JS871a7Txz
—Tuesday night could be another three-point shootout for the Louisville basketball team. If it is, it’s a challenge the team now feels prepared for.
—Not to get too political, but Lamar Jackson should be the president of everything.
—Jon Rothstein says David Padgett has succeeded in returning Louisville to national relevance after the embarrassing loss to Kentucky.
—Rodjay Burns’ first game in a Louisville uniform is going to come against Alabama. The Ohio State transfer and former Trinity star is not scared.
For Louisville cornerback Rodjay Burns, it will be his first game in a Cardinals uniform after he sat out the 2017 season because of NCAA transfer rules. But for his first contest with Louisville, he says the Cardinals won’t be backing away from the game.
“They (are) them; we (are) us,” Burns said according to The Courier-Journal. “I really can’t explain it. I’m going to take the attitude as, OK, they’re another team. We put our pads on like they put their pads on. They’re not scary because they won the national championship. We’re gonna play ball.”
—The Athletic’s ACC notebook (subscription) wonders if Saturday’s performance is going to be the start of a breakthrough for Deng Adel.
—And finally, Big Monday is back tonight which means I am contractually obligated to post this:
Still the best thing ESPN has ever done.
No. 5 Duke is at No. 25 Miami at 7, and then No. 10 Kansas is at No. 6 West Virginia at 9.