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The Cardinal Countdown: 14 Days Until Kickoff

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Connecticut Huskies v Louisville Cardinals Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images

#14 Marcus Riley

Class: Freshman

Ht/Wt: 5-10/170

Position: Wide Receiver

Hometown: Tallahassee, FL

Twitter: @PrimeeTimee2

Thoughts: Marcus Riley had the distinct pleasure of being the first commit for the Cards in the 2018 class back in July of 2016. So how did the Cards staff go down to Tallahassee and snatch a talented 3-4 star athlete from FSU’s backyard? It was a ‘Kolby-Madison’ Production. Kolby Smith, the Tallahassee native and Rickards Alum was on Marcus early, showing what a kid from that area, and that school specifically, could come and do in the Petrino offense. Kolby “knows from experience, bro” what it takes to succeed and the selling points of the city of Louisville and the University to a young man from that part of Florida. But, if Kolby gets the points, one Sam Madison has to get credited with the assist. Sam coached Marcus’ 7-on-7 squad down in Florida and Riley credited Sam’s praise of the University and the program as what peaked his interest beyond speaking with Kolby almost daily. Two former stars, still out there slinging praise for the University has to make you feel good as a fan, but when it translates to landing a young man like Riley, that my friends is what they call icing on the recruiting big cookie cake.

If I had to use one word to describe Marcus it would be “shifty”. I’m not prone to throwing comparisons out just for the sake of filling space but my honest reaction when watching some of his highlights was thinking...”wow, that was Lamar-esque”. Take a look for yourself and tell me that the first twenty seconds, or at the 50 second mark, or at the two minute mark you don’t get a small tingle in your britches...

At the time of his commitment Marcus was hoping to suit up at QB for the Cards but I think Louisville was always recruiting him as an athlete. A few weeks into his career it appears his initial landing spot is at wide receiver, and even though the room is somewhat crowded in 2018 there will be opportunities in the future, as I discussed back on Day 18. I know Petrino mentioned him by name last week as a player who was impressing early and some interesting news out of fall camp has him getting some reps as a return man as well. From what I’ve seen on tape calling him a “playmaker” as they did in the video above is pretty accurate. I’d be surprised if he isn’t one of the handful of freshman who will maxout their four game “trial run” allowing him to maintain a redshirt if it makes sense...or they could keep on playing him if he’s become invaluable on special teams or at the wideout position.

I hesitated to mention it as to avoid the dreaded Mike Marra curse but Petrino spoke back in June about how Riley reminded him of former Cardinal, Harry Douglas. If that’s the case…ummm, I’ll take another one of those for sure.

Sweet Tweet:

Marcus is all locked up, so instead let me toss this out there for the folks who aren’t on twitter. The first seats are now officially installed in the new expansion.

They’re red, and they’re spectacular.