—A reminder that Louisville football is holding its season preview fan event this Saturday night at Cardinal Stadium.
—The NCAA continues to be the worst, and pretty much everyone who covers college sports wrote about it on Wednesday.
This was all about enforcement, which is to say this was about protecting the money. It’s about not even bothering to address the free-market value of players, making a move toward the Olympic model that allows for sponsorship or endorsement opportunities or even truly protecting student-athletes.
Consider that the NCAA could have addressed academic fraud, most famously revealed in the scandal over no-work classes at the University of North Carolina. The NCAA said it lacked the authority to penalize UNC. Tuition, room and board is the compensation players receive and it isn’t insignificant, at least unless the school is steering you to courses where nothing is taught.
It strikes to the heart of college athletics. Or should. The NCAA’s own commission, headed by Condoleezza Rice, deemed that a “must.”
The NCAA deemed it unworthy of comment. It was not addressed. It was a profound and meaningful failure.
This was all about protecting the status quo by clearing investigative barriers and then promising to drop the hammer on whomever they catch.
—One of the NCAA’s announcements on Wednesday was that USA Basketball would be determining the “elite” high school players who can have agents and go to the new super awesome July camp. Except the NCAA never talked to anyone from the NBA or USA Basketball about this, and USA Basketball has no interest in taking it on.
Top officials with the NBA and USA Basketball were blindsided with timing and changes in the NCAA’s announcement of future rules surrounding pro basketball prospects, sources told ESPN.
University of Kentucky coach John Calipari, talking about the NCAA rules changes on SportsCenter, said “None of this goes into effect until the NBA and the Players Association come up with something, and I’m hearing it won’t be until 2022 so we’re probably wasting our breath dealing with the ins and outs of this.
”I’ll give you an example: I’m here in the Bahamas, and the CEO of USA Basketball, Jim Tooley, is here and he’s saying ‘Wait a minute. We deal with one of the one-percenters. We don’t deal with foreign players. We’re not in a position to try to say who gets an agent and who does not.’
”There’s a lot of stuff that needs to be worked out,” Calipari said. “I hope as we go through all this stuff that we’re thinking about is what it will do to all of these young people.”
So we’re already off to a great start.
—Lamar Jackson has launched his own line of merchandise — “Era 8 Apparel.” You can check out the website here.
—I’m just going to do what everyone else already has and say that this seems like a poor idea and leave it at that.
Former #Louisville coach Rick Pitino says he is starting a podcast in conjunction with his forthcoming book (due out on Sept. 4). Long a critic of social media, Pitino even plans to start a Twitter account.— Tim Sullivan (@TimSullivan714) August 7, 2018
Although thinking about Rick reading podcast ads is insanely entertaining.
—Last Chance U is returning for a fourth season, and it’ll be back at Independence Community College for a second straight year.
—ACC schools are now reportedly spending $110-120 million overall to prepare for the ACC Network launch. That’s four times what SEC schools spent
—My guess is that right now a majority of American sports fans would be surprised to see our name on this list.
The only eleven P5 football programs that have never been on probation— Chris Dokish (@ChrisDokish) August 7, 2018
When we lose games from now on I say we do the Duke/Vandy/etc. thing where we passive aggressively blame our heightened moral standards for the defeat.
—Bobby Petrino, Lukayus McNeil and Linwood Foy address the media (video) after Louisville’s first day of practice in full pads.
—If you’re looking for some part time work, Louisville is hiring for several positions at Cardinal Stadium this year.
—Tony Bennett’s offseason motto for Virginia basketball is apparently “run to the roar,” which, you know, was Dan McDonnell’s motto for Louisville baseball two years ago.
Take more from us Tony, you can’t.
—Lamar Jackson says the speed of the NFL won’t stop him from running.
—Remember yesterday when we talked about how he was making a habit out of this?
—The NCAA wants rule-breakers to be punished like law-breakers. The goal, as ever, is to stop players from getting paid.
—Current Golden State Warrior and former Xavier star David West sees Chris Mack doing big things at Louisville.
How do you feel about Xavier losing Chris Mack (to Louisville) and Travis Steele being promoted?
I wanted them to go further in the tournament, I’ll say that. Chris did all he could do at Xavier. He had a heck of a run, keeping the program climbing. I think Travis will do a great job of that, just trying to keep the program moving in the right direction and keep contending at a national level. Obviously Chris is one of the great young coaches so with him going to Louisville, I think everybody kind of expected it because he’s such a hot commodity. He’s a program changer. I think he’ll do great at Louisville and I expect Travis to keep things rollin’ and keep the tradition going at Xavier.
—Brian Bowen will begin his professional career in Australia.
—Earl Clark dunking on Luke Harangody statue.
What should replace the Castleman statue in Cherokee Triangle? pic.twitter.com/7LOySfGfXm— Terry Meiners (@terrymeiners) August 8, 2018
Follow-up: this needs to happen.
There are still 17 months left to make Earl statues this decade's pegasus statues around town.— doctorofdunk (@doctorofdunk) August 8, 2018
Golfing Earl statue at Valhalla, Banana Costume Earl statue at The Speed Museum, Not Knowing If He’s Ever Been To Arizona Before Earl statue at the airport. The possibilities are limitless.
—Louisville swimming is well-represented at the Pan Pacific Championships.
—Probly need to work on this.
Most turnovers in the CFP Era— Tom Fornelli (@TomFornelli) August 8, 2018
1. Louisville - 106
1. NM State - 106
3. SJ State - 105
4. Kansas - 104
5. Southern Miss - 102
5. UCF - 102
7. EMU - 100
7. Hawaii - 100
7. Purdue - 100
10. 4 teams tied at 98
—This is cool though.
Point Differential in ACC Games since 2014— Tom Fornelli (@TomFornelli) August 8, 2018
1. Clemson: 486
2. Louisville: 301
3. VaTech: 191
4. FSU: 175
5. Pitt: 77
6. Miami: 69
7. GaTech: 37
8. UNC: -1
9. NC State: -57
10. Duke: -151
11. BC: -217
12. Virginia: -228
13. Wake: -269
14. Syracuse: -413
—Jeff Eisenberg of Yahoo looks at what the NCAA got right and what it got wrong with its “sweeping reform” of college basketball on Wednesday.
—Former U of L women’s soccer standout Erin Yenney has been named to the final roster of the National Women’s Soccer League’s Chicago Red Stars.
—The 100th PGA Championship kicks off today in St. Louis. Here are some expert picks and predictions.
—No Cali life for Matz after all.
Matz Stockman is staying at Minnesota and will be eligible to play this season, per a source.— Evan Daniels (@EvanDaniels) August 7, 2018
—The U of L fan lawsuit against the NCAA hit the courtroom Wednesday morning.
—The U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association announced Tuesday that former U of L head coach Ron Mann is one of six coaches who will be inducted into the USTFCCCA Coaches Hall of Fame as part of the Class of 2018.
—Summer Tour hits Wales.
—Louisville received 88 votes but didn’t crack the preseason volleyball coaches top 25. Pitt (No. 20) is the only ACC squad that did.
—Yahoo’s Pete Thamel breaks down the coaching hot seat situation for each conference in college football. He doesn’t put Bobby Petrino on the official list, but does list Louisville as “worth monitoring” ... although I suppose that could be said for every program.
Worth monitoring – We dove deep into the Louisville situation earlier, as Purdue’s Jeff Brohm coaching there at some point feels inevitable. (As does some backlash for Bobby Petrino having three family members on staff.) There’s a chance Georgia Tech’s Paul Johnson, who turns 61 this month, steps away at the end of the season. A job like Georgia Tech is interesting because in a down market they could nab a better candidate than in most coaching cycles.
There are no other glaring jobs right now in the ACC. But the interesting dynamic to watch will be what gives in the league’s brutal Atlantic division. With Boston College and Wake Forest both the strongest they’ve been in years, someone has to slip. Is that Louisville? North Carolina State? Does Syracuse stay mired in the basement? Something has to give there with the middle class rising.
—Thamel expands on his thoughts on the unique situations at Louisville and LSU here.
—Your efforts have not gone unnoticed.
—CBS Local previews the ACC and likes Louisville to win more than seven games.
—Louisville baseball has landed a commitment from Indianapolis pitcher Avery Short.
—B-Rad remains rad.
—The Kentucky Derby Museum has raised a new banner to honor Justify and is also planning a new exhibit for the latest Triple Crown winner.
—ACC commissioner John Swofford says he has “great confidence” in Louisville moving forward.
“I am very comfortable with the leadership moving forward and that’s important,” Swofford said. “When an institution goes through the difficult times that Louisville has gone through, and other institutions have been through it, in my mind one of the most important things is the faith and trust and respect of what’s being done has to be restored with your colleague institutions - in this case the other ACC schools - and with the fan base and your supporters.
“I think that is happening very, very quickly at Louisville.”
Swofford lauded the hires of Bendapudi, Tyra and Mack and said the league and its other 13 members are “tremendously excited” to have Louisville in the league and “look forward” to the future.
Bendapudi, the former business dean and provost at the University of Kansas, has been on the job since mid-May as the 18th president of the university. Swofford said he has only chatted with Bendapudi by phone, but said he’s in the process of setting up a time to make a trip to Louisville.
“I was tremendously impressed with her in our phone conversation,” Swofford said. “I have heard tremendous things about her and I look forward to sitting down with her and working with her in the future.”
—This exhaustive catalog of Dwight Schrute’s battles on ‘The Office’ is terrific.
—This is both a gross stat and fuel for the belief that Louisville can overachieve in 2018.
Louisville’s defense allowed a touchdown on 74.4% of opponent red-zone trips last year, 125th out of 130 FBS teams.— Hidden Agenda Generator (@DavidHaleESPN) August 8, 2018
Simply being league average would’ve made a difference of about 55 points — or 4 points per game. 4 points per game was diff between 8 wins and 10.
—Just like at Louisville, there’s a board war happening at North Carolina. I’m sure there’s will end with UNC football retroactively being awarded a BCS title or some shit.
—Lorenzo Mauldin, who is fighting for a roster spot with the Jets, left practice early with an injury on Wednesday.
—And finally, I’m hosting R&R solo this afternoon from 3-6. Keep me company.