clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Thursday morning Cardinal news and notes

New, 71 comments

Colby Berson adds his name to the throng of Louisville fans who officially want Bama.

—Spread check: Alabama by 24.5.

The over/under on the game, by the way, opened at 53 and has now ballooned all the way to 62.5. The people are expecting some points.

—A reminder to keep sending in your “where we’re watching” locations for Friday’s post. I think this is going to wind up topping the Clemson game from two years ago when it comes to the number of submissions.

—There is no longer any uncertainty about the matter: Louisville wants Bama.

—The sixth-ranked U of L men’s soccer team moved to 2-0-0 on the young season with a 1-0 win over visiting Georgia State on Tuesday night.

—Court documents made public on Wednesday reveal that former U of L Kenny Johnson instructed then director of basketball operations Michael Bowden to keep Christian Dawkins’ name off of the “unofficial visit form” during Brian Bowen’s visit to campus, even though Dawkins was with him. When the FBI investigation broke in September, U of L compliance instructed Bowden to put Dawkins’ name on the form.

This wouldn’t seem like a large thing for Louisville (relatively speaking), but it could spell some trouble for Johnson, who accepted an assistant coaching job with La Salle back in May.

—The latest CBS candid coaches series focused on whether or not Rick Pitino will ever coach a Division-I program again. A slight majority of coaches polled answered yes.

Those who said yes ...

”I think if you look around, whether it’s been college football or sports in general, life in general, guys that have proven they’re capable of winning and being successful ultimately get more chances than others. If you take it at face value, he may be the best coach of all time in college basketball. I think there’s going to be somebody that gives him another chance at some level. Someone’s going to roll the dice on him. That’s the history of our game.”

”As long as one of the Adidas guys doesn’t implicate him under oath, he’ll definitely coach again. If there’s really no evidence he knew about the [Brian] Bowen stuff, he’ll coach again.”

”Administrators have continually proven that they will re-hire the guy that was fired for cheating/lying/stealing vs. the the guy who was fired for losing. So I have to say yes.”

”The more time that passes, the less anybody is going to care. I think he’ll be coaching again this time next year. I know he wants to -- and somebody will give him the chance.”

”Yes, but would be a complete joke. But based on many previous hires of guys, I’m sure someone will want the publicity.”

”A lot of athletic directors and presidents wanting to win the press conference. Last Chance U should do a season with him if that happens.”

”Yes. Within two years. A famous brand name that needs to be brought back to relevance. Only a matter of time. He wins big and sells tickets.”

”Wouldn’t think so after his tell-all book comes out, but Mark Gottfried got hired this offseason, so my guess is yes.”

”I do think he will be hired again. How many chances did Jim Harrick get?”

”I hope not. But, after some time away, possibly in the pros, some AD might see it as an opportunity to kick-start their program with a high-profile hire. I would like to think that Pitino would be ready to do other things at this point in his life.”

—Nick Saban loves neutral site season-openers. He should. He’s 8-0 in them as Alabama’s head coach.

—Former Florida State star Jalen Ramsey doesn’t have nice things to say about former coach Jimbo Fisher.

—Thoughts and prayers to all those confident enough in Kentucky football to invest money in the Wildcats.

—The U of L volleyball team is headed to Gainesville for the Florida Bubly Invitational. They’ll face at least two top 10 teams during the tournament.

—A public viewing at Churchill Downs for John Asher has been planned for next Tuesday. Asher’s funeral will take place the following day at the Cathedral of the Assumption. More details here.

—Chris Mack says Steve Enoch can be “really, really good” for Louisville.

“He’s extremely physical and has great size,” Mack said. “As big and as strong as he is, he’s extremely agile and moves his feet well.

“But he’s not relegated to being just four feet around the basket. We’re going to need him to be a rugged rebounder and he’s going to have to stay out of foul trouble. Steven is really talented both around the basket and facing the basket

At the time he hired Pegues, Mack called him one of the “best big man coaches” around. He expects Pegues will help Enoch drastically improve, but there’s one area that Mack says he needs to work on the most.

“Steven’s biggest challenge is just slowing down,” Mack said. “Mike will do a really good job of teaching him pace and not being in a hurry. He needs to take what the defense gives, sort of read the defense and I don’t mean just the guy guarding him but also the help defenders.

“Some times he gets sped up but Mike will work on that with him. If he can just improve his IQ a little and his pace, he has a chance to be really, really good.”

—The first official step towards the elimination of the one-and-done rule took place today.

—U of L has toughened up its football coaching contracts to protect against nepotism, disparagement and leaking secrets.

—Anas Mahmoud will begin his professional career back in his home country of Egypt.

—Strength coaches are the best possible type of insane.

—Fellow college hoops coaches say Davidson’s Bob McKillop is the most under-appreciated head coach in the sport.

—Former Aspire Academy star Charles Bassey has been cleared by the NCAA to play for Western Kentucky this season.

—The ACC Digital Network previews Louisville-Alabama.

—Eric Crawford says that there isn’t much meat on the bone when it comes to Mark Jurich’s latest beef with Vince Tyra. Jurich apologized for the tone of the letter earlier this morning.

—College football’s week one has a history of getting very weird. Here’s hoping that continues this weekend.

—Jeff Brohm somehow making Purdue football undeniably fun is the Brohm family’s greatest achievement.

—Which non-power unbeaten would have been the scariest in a playoff?

—Nice to see Chris Mack having a meeting of the minds with the U of L student section. If the game environment at the Yum Center is going to improve, I think it’s going to have to start with the students.

—Here’s a rundown of what Nick Saban said during Wednesday’s SEC coaches conference call.

—I was searching for the 1991 Fiesta Bowl box score yesterday, and this was the first result that popped up on Google:

Hmm...

—Jawon Pass nearly picked Alabama as a recruit. Now his first career start comes against the Tide. No, Pass isn’t Lamar Jackson, but 247 Sports says he’s going to “shock” some people.

—The trek has begun.

—A reminder for those who will be in Orlando by tomorrow afternoon, come hang out with us at the Tin Roof on International Drive. Drink and food specials will be flowing from 3-7.

—Omar Payne will be in the house on Oct. 20.

—Jahmius Ramsey will be in the same house a month earlier.

—Also according to Jake, Tyrell Jones will be visiting Louisville October 17-19.

—Brian VanGorder is going to make $950,000 this year to coach the Louisville defense. He better hold Greg Dortch to no more than 300 yards of total offense.

—Louisville in the final days of summer ...

—Roll Bama Roll previews the Louisville offense.

—The Montgomery Advertiser says that even with its uncertainty at quarterback, Alabama should make quick work of Louisville.

PREDICTION

Louisville head coach Bobby Petrino was pretty brazen in his comments to Cardinals boosters earlier this month when he declared: “I believe we’re going go beat (Alabama) — so I need everybody else to believe that. And we will go beat ’em.” While the 24 1/2-point spread might indicate something different, Petrino’s certainly entitled to his opinion, and as most coaches will attest, any bravado in front of boosters should be taken with a grain of salt. That said, it’s hard to believe a team that lost its Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback will have the sheer talent to hang with the reigning national champion Crimson Tide. Although Alabama has its early-season deficiencies, especially when it comes to its mostly inexperienced defense, Louisville’s offense is hardly the sort of big-play threat that has caused the Tide trouble in the past. Louisville will require a lot more than sheer belief to knock off an Alabama team that will likely have its own way with a Cardinals defense that allowed an average of 27.4 points and 338.1 total yards per game last season. Alabama 41, Louisville 17

—The Utah Jazz have signed former U of L guard Trey Lewis. Now just ink Russ Smith and then 10 other Cards and we’ve got ourselves a new favorite in the West.

—I’ve never needed anything more than I need a Rocket/Turbo backcourt to cheer for.

—Clemson plays Furman this weekend. Furman’s quarterback is a Clemson student. Here’s how that’s possible.

—ESPN’s preseason bowl projections have Louisville in the Pinstripe Bowl vs. Nebraska or the Sun Bowl vs. Utah.

—This Lego re-enactment of the Kick Six is pretty terrific.

—ESPN’s 42 college football writers make their playoff predictions. All 42 have Clemson in the final four.

—Some comments from Alabama players on Louisville, changes to their playbook, and the team’s young linebackers.

—Beautiful tweet:

Equally beautiful tweet:

—Louisville is expecting a “slugfest” Saturday night.

—The Washington Post previews Louisville-Bama.

—Roll Bama Roll looks at the Cardinal defense.

—ESPN’s week one preview has Louisville-Bama as the third-best game of the opening weekend.

3. No. 1 Alabama Crimson Tide vs. Louisville Cardinals(Camping World Stadium, Orlando)

Saturday, 8 p.m. ET, ABC and WatchESPN

What it means: This is one of two chances this week for the ACC to make a statement against the SEC (the other being No. 4 on this list). If Louisville can pull off the upset (and keep in mind Alabama has won 73 straight games against unranked opponents) maybe the ACC’s Atlantic Division is stronger than just Clemson. At the very least, a Louisville win could boost Clemson’s resume down the stretch if the Cardinals are ranked. At best, maybe the ACC is the next league to get two teams in if Louisville’s only loss is to ACC champion Clemson. Assuming Alabama follows the script, though, and wins its 17th straight season opener, the Tide will remain in its familiar spot -- at the top. FPI says: Alabama has an 87 percent chance to win.

—Bama Hammer serves up five bold predictions for Saturday night.

—The Boston Herald previews week one in the ACC, which they say is headlined by Monday night’s tilt between Virginia Tech and Florida State.

—And finally, R&R will be live from the Sports & Social Club today from 3-6. At 6 we’ll hand the baton to Jody Demling and the first Bobby Petrino Coaches Show of the year, which can also be heard on 790. Listen here.