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Louisville Football Bowl Projections: Week 8

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Hola, El Paso

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Ivan Pierre Aguirre-USA TODAY Sports
Ivan Pierre Aguirre-USA TODAY Sports

The Card Chronicle Bowl Projections Digest (CCBPD) is back! Last time I had the pleasure of writing about bowl games was on September 21st after Louisville had beaten the Central Florida Golden Knights in dramatic fashion and everyone was riding high. In that piece I infamously wrote, “Only way I get to continue writing this piece is if Louisville keeps winning, so let’s all hope that happens.”

What I failed to remember was that I was about to leave country for two weeks, which would prevent me from being able to do so. I then returned home just in time to see Louisville lose to Virginia in the dumbest way imaginable. I thought long and hard (not really) about bringing the CCBPD back following the loss, but everyone, including myself, was pretty pissed off so I thought it’d be best to let things cool off before trying to talk post-season ball.

So, I hope the Cards getting back over .500 was the ice bath we all needed and we can all have fun dreaming about going to Shreveport in December together again.

As always, before we get into the fun stuff we must touch on the nerd stuff. Bill Connelly’s SP+ analytics computer was particularly impressed with Louisville’s defense holding Boston College’s 32nd-ranked offense to just 14 points and 266 total yards. With the defense’s strong showing UofL saw their overall ranking jump 18 spots from #53 to #35 (one spot ahead of Kentucky, *wink*) and the defense’s ranking jump from #96 to #77. That’s a lot.

Louisville also got a nice nudge in SP+’s Win Total Projections as the machine now gives the Cards a SLIGHTLY better chance of going 7-5 (33%) than 6-6 (32%). Here’s the full picture:

ESPN’s FPI is slightly more conservative, projecting the Cards to finish with a 6-6 (actually 6.4-5.6) record. FPI also ranks Louisville’s remaining schedule as the 39th toughest in the country, which is something to keep in mind as the Cards still need two more wins to go bowling. Here’s the win probabilities FPI gives for Louisville’s remaining games:

Now for the fun stuff…

ESPN:

Military Bowl Presented by Peraton (Bonagura) – Louisville vs. Central Florida Golden Knights (seriously)

Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium, Annapolis, Maryland

Dec. 27, 2:30PM, ESPN

Tony The Tiger Sun Bowl (Schlabach) Louisville vs. UCLA

Sun Bowl, El Paso, Texas

Dec. 31, 12:30PM, ESPN

Action Network (Brett McMurphy):

New Era Pinstripe Bowl Louisville vs. Minnesota

Yankee Stadium, Bronx, New York

Dec. 29, 2:15PM. ESPN

CBS (Jerry Palm):

Tony The Tiger Sun Bowl Louisville vs. Oregon State

Sun Bowl, El Paso, Texas

Dec. 31, 12:30PM, ESPN

College Football News:

Tony The Tiger Sun Bowl Louisville vs. Utah

Sun Bowl, El Paso, Texas

Dec. 31, 12:30PM, ESPN

247 Sports:

Military Bowl Presented by Peraton Louisville vs. Houston

Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium, Annapolis, Maryland

Dec. 27, 2:30PM, ESPN

Athlon:

New Era Pinstripe Bowl Louisville vs. Maryland

Yankee Stadium, Bronx, New York

Dec. 29, 2:15PM. ESPN

Pro Football Network:

Fenway Bowl Louisville vs. SMU

Fenway Park, Boston, Massachusetts

Dec. 29, 11AM, ESPN

Sporting News:

SERVPRO First Responders Bowl – Louisville vs. Kansas State

Gerald J. Ford Stadium, Dallas, Texas

Dec. 28, 3:15PM, ESPN

USA Today: (article will be updated once published)

Bleacher Report: (article will be updated once published)

Totals Tally: Sun Bowl (3), Military Bowl (2), Pinstripe Bowl (2), Fenway Bowl (1), First Responders Bowl (1)

Looks like we’ll be spending the holidays in Juarez! Pack your bags!

In all seriousness the Sun Bowl looks like a beautiful setting for a college football game, and the event and local interest in El Paso is supposed to be outstanding.

4 down. 2 to go.