—Spread check: Alabama by 24.5.
—”Where We’re Watching” posts are back for another year. If you’re going to be taking in the Louisville-Alabama game with fellow Cardinals fans at some public location, shoot me an email with the viewing spot at MikeRuth5@aol.com or put it in the comment section. The post will go up on Friday morning.
—Former Card Josh Rogers will make his Major League debut on Wednesday when the Baltimore Orioles hand him the ball.
—The NCAA has posted a job opening for the Appeals Committee Director of Infractions. May I count on all of you as references?
—Eat it, Florida.
People don’t forget.
—Louisville is No. 30 in the preseason FEI rankings from Football Outsiders.
—U of L recaps Bobby Petrino’s Monday press conference.
“We’re excited for the opener,” UofL head coach Bobby Petrino said at his weekly press conference. “I’m fired up for our team. I think we’ve had a good camp and we’ve grown and gotten better. We’ve learned a lot about our players and we’re excited to play a game.”
This isn’t just a normal opener. It’s a match-up against one of the most iconic programs in the history of college football. The Crimson Tide have won 26 SEC championships and 17 national titles in their history, including a win over Georgia to win the College Football Playoff title last year.
”We’re playing the defending national champions,” Petrino said. “They have a great tradition and are a very well-coached team. They have a lot of great players. We’ve been working toward this game for a long time and we’re excited that it’s finally game week.”
With five days remaining before the first game, Petrino released the depth chart, but knows that nothing is set in stone before the team finally takes the field on Saturday.
”We’ve had some really good competition and we still have some competition going on,” Petrino said. “This is the tentative starting lineup, and obviously, you’ve still got to practice and work to get better in practice, and work to keep your job in practice. It’s pretty close to where we thought it would be when we started the season and there hasn’t been a whole lot of change.”
—Louisville has made the final 12 for Cole Anthony, the top-ranked point guard in the class of 2019.
—Four-star big man Drew Timme will be paid an in-home visit by Louisville on Sept. 18. Timme will also take visits from Gonzaga, Arizona, Illinois, Michigan State and Alabama.
—Cutting the cord but still want college football? Here’s a guide to making that happen.
—The Jets’ 53-man roster projection includes Teddy Bridgewater (for now).
—Louisville WR commit Stanley King talks about (video) playing for the Cards and the start to his senior season so far.
—Roll Bama Roll reacts to the release of the Crimson Tide depth chart.
—Kick off your Saturday tailgate with a Friday tailgate as the Cards take on the Cats for the first time this season.
—People have been complaining about there being too many bowl games for at least 88 years now.
—The CJ’s Jake Lourim lays out how much better Louisville has been under Bobby Petrino when it scores first.
In his last eight seasons of coaching, he has won 52 coin tosses and taken the ball 48 times.
Those decisions set up his scripted first drive, which in turn sets the tone for the game. In the past four seasons at Louisville, his teams are 20-3 when they score on their first drive and 14-15 when they don’t.
So in analyzing the first few minutes of Saturday’s showdown, the opening series will be crucial. Petrino devises a strategy for that possession to establish the offense, score early points and lay the foundation for the rest of the game. He said he will not treat Saturday’s first drive any different.
“We’d like to take the ball and go get a touchdown,” Petrino said. “That’s typically what we want to do and expect to do. You try to mix different personnel groups, different formations out there. We’ve got to do a good job up in the press box of really understanding what we’re seeing and what they’re doing to those different personnel groups and different formations.
“You’re not only trying to score, but you’re trying to learn and bring it to the next series.”
Overall, Louisville’s first drives are not much more successful than the others. Last season, Petrino’s team scored on 53.8 percent of its opening series and 48.9 percent of all series. But the offense does set up the rest of the game with those first few plays. Five times, the 2017 Cardinals took the ball first and marched 75 yards for a touchdown before the other team touched it. Louisville won four of those games.
—If you’ve ever wanted to see a 17-year-old rescued sea otter pick the winner of Washington-Auburn, well my friend, your moment has arrived.
—Nick Saban says Bobby Petrino and Louisville are “historically good.”
—Kenny Thomas and Henry Famurewa out here lookin’ like they’re dancing to the Chattanooga Choo Choo.
—Lou City is well-represented on the USL Team of the Week.
—Kentucky has named JuCo transfer Terry Wilson as starting quarterback.
—What to expect from the newly renovated Cardinal Stadium.
—If this sends Alabama fans into a frenzy on Saturday, then I’m all for it.
#UCFTwitterMafia Wanted to announce that I have purchased a banner to fly over Camping World Stadium on 9/1 before the Alabama/Louisville game that says “UCF ‘17 CO-NAT’L CHAMPS 13-0 CHADBARRLAW” This will fly around for 3 hours and will end one hour prior to kickoff per FlaLaw.— Attorney Chad A Barr (@ChadBarrPA) August 26, 2018
—The Louisville Cardinals asks if Bobby Petrino’s seat is warming up. I guess they were unhappy with his press conference performance on Monday.
—U of L is No. 7 in the State of the U (Miami) preseason ACC power rankings.
—Nick Saban has neither the patience nor the time for your quarterback assumptions.
—ESPN’s David Hale has Louisville going 5-7 overall this season and just 2-6 in the ACC. The bright side? He’s got the Cards taking down Florida State for the third straight year.
OK, fire up the anger machines. My official (sure to be wrong) ACC picks for the year.— A David Hale joint (@DavidHaleESPN) August 27, 2018
Reminder: Someone has to lose games.
2nd reminder: More than 11 bowl bids is tough.
3rd reminder: I picked upsets on purpose bc otherwise it’s boring.
4th reminder: I’m an idiot. pic.twitter.com/q9wBFkh3Ty
—The Ringer explores the uncanny weirdness of Papa John’s downfall.
—History says you should bet the over on Alabama’s early games.
—Busting Brackets ranks Chris Mack as the 6th-best coach in the ACC.
—You can almost hear it already.
My little girl ready to hear that C.A.R.D.S. chant against Bama! pic.twitter.com/uBq5VvPJlk— Terry (@PhillyTeez30) August 13, 2018
—Shockingly, Bama Online gives Bama the nod to beat Louisville.
—Former Alabama defensive back Will Lowery previews Louisville.
—Deng Adel has agreed to a training camp deal with the Minnesota Timberwolves.
—And finally, the sixth-ranked U of L men’s soccer team hosts Georgia State tonight at Lynn Stadium. Here’s a preview.