—The Louisville baseball team’s midweek struggles continued with a 6-3 loss to Eastern Kentucky on Tuesday.
—The Louisville field hockey team is No. 2 in the latest coaches poll. That marks the highest ranking in program history.
—The Athletic’s Chantel Jennings shares thoughts on every team in the women’s NCAA tournament.
No. 2 Louisville (23-3): Dana Evans became the first player in the ACC to go from conference sixth woman of the year to player of the year, and she repeated as player of the year this season. An almost-definite first-round WNBA Draft pick, Evans is the motor of this team, but she didn’t have the kind of ACC Tournament she would have liked. After winning the ACC regular season title and falling in the tournament championship to NC State, the Cardinals will have a chip on their shoulders and an eagerness to prove they were worthy of the program’s first-ever No. 1 ranking in the AP poll earlier this season.
—Jennings also shares her full bracket, where she has Louisville being upset by Georgia in the Sweet 16.
—ESPN has an early preview of Monday night’s NCAA tournament game between the Cards and Marist.
—Aidan Igiehon says farewell.
Thank you, Card Nation pic.twitter.com/0a1YmE7YlZ— Aidan Harris Igiehon (@aidanigiehon) March 16, 2021
—It typically doesn’t take much time for the NCAA tournament to get wild. A team seeded 11th or worse has won a first-round early afternoon Thursday game in each of the last seven tournaments.
—Hoops Insights has some fun facts from a Louisville basketball season that wound up being ... not so fun.
-Carlik Jones ranked 158th in assist rate nationally and 260th in turnover rate per KenPom.com. He was the first Cardinal to rank in the top 300 in both since Reece Gaines in 2002. Jones was the rare high-volume offensive creator with a strong assist-turnover ratio. Not a bad season for the grad transfer!
-Samuel Williamson hit 50.7% of his 2 point jumpers, the highest percentage for any Cardinal with at least 20 made 2 point jumpers since Chinanu Onuaku in 2015-16 (51.8%); those are the only 2 Cards to hit >50% in the last 10 years. Williamson has proven to be a midrange ace and one of the few players who can score efficiently in that area.
-Freshmen and Sophomores accounted for 79.4% of UofL’s minutes played this season, the most since complete data became available in 1997. Louisville was a shockingly young team this season, even by modern college basketball standards.
-This was the 2nd year in a row Louisville did not have a rotation player average 5 fouls per 40 minutes. Chris Mack had never a team achieve that before the last 2 years. Despite playing less than 30 minutes only once all season, Carlik Jones never finished a game with more than 3 personal fouls, and only Jae’lyn Withers fouled out more than once (4 times).
—Eric Crawford covers the clock running out on Louisville’s time as “Replacement Team #1.”
—I’m ready for the banner.
New banner going up at CC Headquarters. pic.twitter.com/23KfDsEDc1— Mike Rutherford (@CardChronicle) March 16, 2021
Nothing matters anymore. Let’s do it.
—Cardinal athletes are participating in Read Across America.
—Sam morphing into a monster on the boards midway through this season was one of the best things about 2020-21.
Samuell Williamson posted the best defensive rebounding percentage (23.1%) for a Louisville small forward since at least Rick Pitino’s first season, which is as far back as Ken Pomeroy’s data goes.— Jeff Greer (@jeffgreer) March 17, 2021
—Kenderick Duncan continues to adjust and make plays for Louisville during spring practice.
—Will Jeff Walz guide his team back to the Final Four? The CJ writers share their thoughts on the matter.
—Boston College sharpshooter Jay Heath, who always seems to torch Louisville, is transferring.
—Still the best.
Five years ago today and still epic— Blue Wire Podcasts (@bluewirepods) March 17, 2021
—Louisville lacrosse is up to No. 15 in the nation this week.
—That 15th-ranked lacrosse team will host North Carolina at 7 p.m. on Thursday in a game at Cardinal Stadium that will be free and open to the public. More details here.
—Basically every Bracketologist in existence was wrong about Louisville. Because of course they were. Why should we have expected anything different?
—Odds Shark has Louisville as the seventh choice to win the women’s NCAA tournament.
Odds to win the Women's NCAA Tournament (BetOnline):— Odds Shark (@OddsShark) March 17, 2021
South Carolina +600
NC State +1600
Texas A&M +2800
—Here’s how to follow the swim and dive Cards at the upcoming NCAA Championships.
—Cardinal Sports Zone has some thoughts on the Chris Mack front.
—Rodger Sherman’s annual Cinderella Guide for The Ringer is always a good time.
—So is the companion video:
—Sports Illustrated previews the women’s basketball tournament and BOLDLY identifies Dana Evans as a player to watch.
—Merlc Code, the former point guard sentenced to prison in 2019 for his role in the college basketball bribery scheme, has a book coming out next year. “Black Market” will be published in March 2022.
—The CJ has a story on the oldest Kentucky high school basketball gym still in use.
—In the last three days, six Cincinnati players have entered the NCAA transfer portal.
The Bearcats currently have four scholarship players on their roster, and zero commitments or signees from the class of 2021.
So ... things could be worse.
—Safeties coach Greg Gasparato and outside linebacker Nick Okeke talked spring practice with the media earlier this week.
—Heat Check CBB is keeping tabs on all of the seniors across the country who are using their extra year of eligibility to return for one more season.
—Shots fired from Sister Jean at Kentucky.
Sister Jean: "I filled out my bracket. I may change it before I go down there. I don't see Kentucky any place. I see a few new names."— Adam Rittenberg (@ESPNRittenberg) March 16, 2021
—There’s plenty of buzz out there that Western Carolina’s Mason Faulkner could be the second transfer to commit to Louisville this “offseason.” A Glasogow native, Faulkner started his college career at Northern Carolina before spending the last two seasons with the Catamounts. He led the team in both points (16.9 ppg) and assists (4.8) in 2020-21, while also averaging 5.5 rebounds.
—Still not entirely sure what a “unit” is, but still one of the best handicappers on Twitter, folks.
ANNOUNCEMENT:— Odds Shark (@OddsShark) March 17, 2021
Some of the best handicappers on Twitter will be competing against each other in a March Madness contest! #BetsOverBrackets
Which team do you think will take home the prize?
Full details: https://t.co/2gVb6vY3bX pic.twitter.com/ewagCvMG6D
—The official mint julep glass for Kentucky Derby 147 is out.
—The Louisville Cardinal recaps the baseball team’s loss to EKU.
—The U of L field hockey team toppled Virginia, 2-1.
—The baby did a bracket.
We’re having to use a variety of techniques to create Virginia’s first bracket. pic.twitter.com/GLFwp1FY1J— Mike Rutherford (@CardChronicle) March 17, 2021
And went with the chalk and the Prince of March.
Swear on everything we didn't cheat. This baby loves the chalk and is all aboard the Josh Pastner hype train. pic.twitter.com/OBnwkoeYhM— Mike Rutherford (@CardChronicle) March 17, 2021
We didn’t have the heart to tell her about the Moses Wright news this morning.
—Michigan State is in contact with former Louisville punter Ryan Harwell.
—Louisville Report starts to look at the men’s basketball roster for 2021-22.
—It’s safe to say Western’s win over Butler was the wildest game of the Kentucky high school postseason thus far.
‘23 G Jamal Chambers HITS THE GAME WINNER from Half @Jamalchambers11 @WarriorsAllIn— DeadStock Visuals (@DeadStockVisual) March 17, 2021
DeadStock Way @weshinton83 @bwbritt23 @kgraves_jr @TravisGraf_ @KYINhoops @PrepHoopsKY @OTPcoachDP @KY_PrepReport @teamhoopsdotcom @AgentGary502 @HenryParkerJR @FOCUS_Bball pic.twitter.com/e6WtmhwWU0
—Keeping it Heel is mad that Louisville, and not North Carolina, landed Matt Cross.
—Louisville football has now wrapped up a “very successful” (and complete this time) spring camp.
—And finally, Dana Evans has put the heartbreak of the ACC championship game behind her and is ready to chase a national title.