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Monday afternoon Cardinal news and notes

My dude Knox has that game week is back feeling, even on a Monday.

—Spread check: Louisville by 4.

—All three NBC college hoops writers believe Louisville will make the 2020 Final Four. Two of them believe the Cards will win the ACC, but none have U of L winning the national title.

—The sights and sounds of Louisville Live:

—The 22nd-ranked Louisville women’s soccer team won its second ACC game in as many days on Saturday when it took down Boston College, 2-1. The Cards defeated Syracuse 3-0 Friday morning in a game that was pushed back a day after multiple Cardinals had come down with an illness. The Cards are now 9-1 overall on the season and 2-1 in ACC play.

—California Governor Gavin Newsom has officially signed CA-SB206 into law. This means that, despite warnings from the NCAA that the measure will upend amateur sports, California will now allow college athletes to profit from their image and likeness.

—Drew Magary writes that every NCAA infraction should actually be legal.

—Rob Dauster of NBC has Louisville at No. 4 in his official preseason hoops rankings for 2019-20.


WHO’S GONE: Christen Cunningham, Khwan Fore, Akoy Agau

WHO’S BACK: Jordan Nwora, Dwayne Sutton, Ryan McMahon, Steve Enoch, Malik Williams, Darius Perry

WHO’S COMING IN: Samuell Williamson, Jaelyn Withers, Josh Nickelberry, Fresh Kimble, David Johnson, Aidan Igiehom, Quinn Slazinski

PROJECTED STARTERS: Fresh Kimble, Samuell Williamson, Dwayne Sutton, Jordan Nwora, Steve Enoch

The big news for Louisville is that they bring back Jordan Nwora, who looks to be the favorite to win the ACC Player of the Year award heading into the season. They also get back Dwayne Sutton, and Malik Williams, and Steve Enoch, and add a recruiting class that is exactly what you would expect someone like Chris Mack to bring into a program like Louisville. They have everything that you would expect out of a top five team …

… except clarity at the point guard spot.

There are options there. Darius Perry returns from last year’s team. Fresh Kimble, a grad transfer from St. Joseph’s, joins the program, as does four-star freshman David Johnson, who is dealing with a shoulder injury that could keep him out at the start of the season. Someone is going to have to win the starting job. Will they be good enough to carry the Cardinals to the top of the ACC?

—Louisville has offered a scholarship to class of 2021 DB Jordan Hancock out of North Gwinnett (Ga.).

—The ACC has released its weekly football honors.

—The U of L video department continues to kill it with this stuff.

—Less than a month into the 2019 season, Rutgers has fired its football coach.

—How desirable is the Rutgers job? Since 2014, there have been 19 Big Ten games that have involved shutouts. Rutgers has been the team shut out in nine of those games. Jason Kirk of the Banner Society newsletter dives into just how disturbing those numbers for the Scarlet Knights are.

The numbers behind this run of shutouts are not for the feint of heart.

—In nine Big Ten shutouts, Rutgers has given up an average of 49 points. (440-0 is the total score in these games, if you want it for your records.)

—The closest of these was 2019’s 30-0 loss to Iowa.

—The worst was Michigan’s 78-0 dismantling in 2016. That was the second year in a row in which Jim Harbaugh went for two with a four-score lead against Rutgers.

—Speaking of 2016, that’s the season Rutgers was shut out back-to-back weeks twice. Ohio State and Michigan did it in October, before Michigan State and Penn State did it in November.

—Both sides of the Big Ten’s most famous rivalry have multiple Rutgers shutouts. Michigan and Ohio State have each done it twice with combined margins of 130 and 114 respectively.

—Indiana beat Rutgers 41-0 in 2017. That’s it. That’s the joke.

—Bardstown High standout JJ Traynor (Jason Osborne’s son) will take his official visit to Louisville next weekend.

—Golfer Cameron Champ’s win for his grandfather at the Safeway Open over the weekend is one of the best sports stories of the year.

—The ACC Digital Network outlines the headline games of the 2019-20 hoops season.

—The U of L women’s golf team tied for 12th at the Schooner Classic over the weekend.

—SMU football is ranked for the first time since the program received the death penalty in 1987.

—Louisville becoming a serious music festival city over the last decade has been an awesome development.

—The 6th-ranked Louisville field hockey team notched a 2-0 win over Providence on Sunday.

—Louisville baseball players who will be in the MLB playoffs:

Brendan McKay (Rays)

Chad Green (Yankees)

Will Smith (Dodgers)

Adam Duvall (Braves)

This feels like a sign of things to come. The MLB playoffs are going to be a lot more interesting to follow so long as we have multiple Cards playing key roles every year.

—Cool story here on Manual High’s 1959 state championship football team getting together to celebrate their 60th anniversary.

—Congrats to Cole Bentley on his engagement.

—Louisville men’s soccer took an upset loss at the hands of NC State Friday night.

—U of L commit Ronald Delancy III seems swayed after his visit to Nebraska last weekend.

—Sports Illustrated’s Mitchell Gladstone predicts that Fresh Kimble will be one of the 11 biggest breakout stars of the 2019-20 college basketball season.

Lamarr “Fresh” Kimble, Louisville, Graduate Student

The former St. Joe’s standout is now in the ACC. Kimble, who only had offers from the Hawks, Creighton, Drexel, UMass and Temple when he graduated from high school in 2015, suffered a foot injury in his junior season opener, thus leaving him with an extra year of eligibility after graduating in May. He now joins a deep Louisville roster that is already bringing back a potential ACC Player of the Year in Jordan Nwora and has four others playing in their final collegiate season.

The Cards have lots of guys in the backcourt, but Kimble is the only true floor general. A pairing of him along with junior Darius Perry seems like a good bet, backed up by some dangerous shooting threats. And given Louisville’s six-man freshman class, a veteran like Fresh will be crucial to the development of Chris Mack’s young Cards.

—The stakes have certainly been raised for Chris Mack’s second season at Louisville, and the Cards are the ones raising them.

—On Friday, Angel McCoughtry announced that she’s opening an ice cream shop in Louisville.

—Class of 2021 standout Khristian Lander seemed to enjoy his experience at Louisville Live.

“It was a super exciting event,” said Lander. “It was a lot different than other events I have been to because it was outside on Fourth Street. It was different, but it was a lot of fun.”

Lander continued, “They had a dunk contest, some of the older players came back, and it was a time for the fans to meet the boys and girls teams, so it was really good.”

One of the highlights for Lander was getting to spend time with the coaching staff and learn more about them.

“I got to know the staff a lot better,” noted Lander. “I spent a lot of time with Coach (Luke) Murray, and also with Kahil (Fennell). I was with them a lot, and I got to talk with Coach Mack every day I was there, so it was a good experience.”

According to Lander, the message to him was that he is going to be a top priority for the Cardinals.

“They stressed to me that I could come in and have an opportunity to play right away,” said Lander. “They want me to be their point guard of the future, and they want me to stay local and play for them.”

Expect Indiana and Michigan to be Louisville’s biggest competition for Lander.

—U of L volleyball took care of North Carolina to stay unbeaten in ACC play.

—Teddy Bridgewater was steady and moved to 2-0 as a starter for the Saints this season with a 12-10 road win over Dallas Sunday night.

—Lamar Jackson was less steady (and his defense even more unsteady) as the Ravens were upset by the Browns, 40-25.

—My daughter’s cool and all, but this might have to be my new Facebook profile picture.

Or this:

—New Xavier head coach Travis Steele certainly seems to be following his old boss Chris Mack’s lead when it comes to social media style.

—Louisville’s Waterfront Botanical Gardens is set to open this week.

—Mark Story wonders if the NCAA’s newly aggressive tone is going to be bad news for Louisville.

—Jaemyn Brakefield learned a lot more about U of L during his official visit last weekend.

—Evan Daniels chimes in with his thoughts on the commitment of Jay Scrubb.

Ten things to do under $5 this week in Louisville.

—Eric Crawford shares his thoughts on Friday’s Louisville Live event.

—And finally, D1Baseball has ranked the top 100 current programs in college baseball and has Louisville at No. 5.