Eastern Kentucky’s football team has to feel good about how they played against Valparaiso last weekend but they will face a much tougher team with Louisville. EKU shut down the Valpo offense last week allowing only 1.5 yards per run. They will have to find a way to get penetration this weekend to slow down Louisville’s running game.
The front for EKU mixes a couple of smaller guys who can run at the ends with bigger guys in the middle. The line combined for four tackles for loss last week with Aaron Patrick getting 2.5 tackles for loss and one sack. Louisville has to avoid giving up the penetration plays that the Cards defense relies on. If Patrick and Tre Turner can get into the backfield and disrupt things, the Louisville offense will end up out of balance.
The linebackers are the best group for EKU. Steven Crowder is the best of the group after finishing second on the team in tackles last year. He started this season with three tackles for loss and a sack. Corey Glass led the team in tackles last week and returned a fumble for a touchdown. The Cards could look to find some success in the short passing game this week with these linebackers being used to support the run so much.
The defensive backs got most of the day off last weekend so there’s not a lot to know about the group. The starters combined for a few tackles and one pass breakup because Valpo ran the ball most of the game in hopes to just get out of the game without injury, I guess. EKU did hold the offense to just 7-19 passing with 61 of the 119 yards passing coming on one play. The safeties for the defense returned this year after good seasons but both corners were backups last season. This will be a good opportunity for Louisville to work on the issues they had in the passing game on Monday.