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Monday afternoon Cardinal news and notes

This picture is your Louisville basketball weekend recap.

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—Spread check: Louisville by 2.5.

NET Rankings Update: No. 53 (down 21 spots from Saturday).

—After an upset loss to Florida State on Sunday, Jeff Walz says it’s time to find out how tough a team he has.

His No. 3-ranked Cardinals likely lost their chance for an outright Atlantic Coast Conference title, though they can still win a share of the title and the No. 1 seed in the ACC Tournament with a win Feb. 28 at Notre Dame.

Work for that will begin when practice resumes Wednesday. Between now and then, however, will be an important two days for the program’s immediate future.

“It is what it is right now,” Walz said. “I hope it sits with them and stings for a while. It will with me. That’s the tell-tale sign. If it doesn’t bother our kids much, then we’re not going to have a deep run in the postseason at all. We’ll find out on Wednesday how we come back and compete in practice.”


“It was a poor performance all the way around, both offensively and defensively,” Walz said. “We did not play the team basketball that we’ve been playing. We did not make the extra pass. We took some contested, early shots. ... It’s part of life. You’ve got to learn from it, and we’re going to find out how tough we really are. I’ve explained it over and over to them ... every team we’re playing is fighting for a chance to get into the NCAA Tournament. And we’re playing for the outright opportunity to win this league, an we laid an egg. It was a poor performance.”

And for this Louisville team that has shown so much promise and even spent time ranked No. 1 in the nation, its postseason fortunes likely hang on how well it responds.

—Here’s the recap of the loss to FSU.

—Kenny Payne doesn’t have a problem with “the video.”

—The Cincinnati Enquirer also cover “the video.”

—Terry Rozier capped off a monster week with his first buzzer-beating game winner as a Charlotte Hornet on Saturday.

—Patience and persistence are the areas of focus for Malik Cunningham this spring.

—U of L junior outfielder Cameron Masterman has been named the ACC’s Co-Baseball Player of the Week after homering in each of Louisville’s first three games of the season.

—Penny Hardaway casually dropped Monday afternoon that Memphis State attempted to get Louisville on the schedule back in January.

—The U of L lacrosse team jumps into this week’s national rankings at No. 23.

—Dana Evans is one of 22 finalists for the 2020-21 Senior CLASS Award.

—Sunday’s thriller between Michigan and Ohio State arrived at the perfect time for college basketball.

—Happy 7-year anniversary to what is still the most recent meeting on the hardwood between Louisville and Cincinnati.

I’d be fine if it stayed that way forever.

—Collegiate Baseball News has Louisville up five spots to No. 6 in its latest weekly poll.

—Louisville WR/DB Marqui Lowery has entered the transfer portal.

—If you missed the CC Podcast recapping a wild three-stretch for U of L basketball, you can find it here.

—Class move here from Moore’s Breion Davis to make sure Trinity’s Vince Wolfram got a bucket on his senior night. Wolfram had missed the entire season because of injury.

Sports are still cool sometimes.

—Rick Pitino’s Iona Gaels are shutting it down for the rest of the regular season after yet another positive Covid test. They are still planning on participating in the MAAC tournament.

—U of L closer Michael Kirian is on the NBCWA Stopper of the Year watch list.

—Kentucky Kingdom will be sold, and the new management details will be announced during a Tuesday press conference.

—Here’s a rapid reaction from The Athletic on what Louisville is getting in new QB transfer Luke McCaffrey.

What is Louisville getting in McCaffrey?

Mitch Sherman, Nebraska beat writer: The Cardinals are getting an outstanding athlete in McCaffrey. While limited as a passer at Nebraska, he showed his versatility in playing receiver in addition to QB in 2019. McCaffrey opened the 2020 season by lining up at several spots against Ohio State and broke a 47-yard run as a running back on the first possession.

Interestingly, the Huskers shifted entirely away from the multi-position approach after the opener, moving McCaffrey into the starting QB position after two games. He helped beat Penn State but played poorly in a loss against Illinois and returned to a reserve role behind Adrian Martinez before opting in January to transfer.

What this means for Louisville at QB

Matt Fortuna, college football staff writer: Will McCaffrey be eligible for 2021? If so, perhaps he, along with Evan Conley, can challenge incumbent starter Malik Cunningham, who improved statistically as a passer and runner from 2019 to 2020 but saw that progress diminished by turning the ball over so often (12 interceptions, three lost fumbles).

Still, Louisville stuck with Cunningham all season despite those giveaways, which speaks to his playmaking abilities. Perhaps if McCaffrey is eligible and shows enough in practice, he can provide a real alternative if the Cards continue to give the ball away.

—Tonight’s Duke-Syracuse contest may be the most crucial bubble game of the week.

—After 50 years of serving Louisville, Shively Sporting Goods is shutting down. Just terrible news.

—Two U of L football transfers are considered to be among the biggest impact transfers in college football.

—Nice to see some of these guys back in Louisville.

—Former U of L assistant Brian Jean-Mary is joining Josh Heupel’s staff at Tennessee.

—Louisville native and left-handed pitcher Adam Elliott is enjoying his new role as a starter.

—Louisville Report likes Louisville over Notre Dame by a bucket tomorrow night.

—And finally, Tar Heel Blog serves up three things that were learned from UNC’s 45-point blowout of Louisville on Saturday.