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Wednesday afternoon Cardinal news and notes

Here’s hoping Halloween treated you as well as it did Ross.

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—Spread check: Louisville by 9.5.

—Predictive computer models are split between 10 or 11 wins for this year’s Louisville football team.

—Jeff Walz has picked up a major commitment from Sierra Canyon (Ca.) star Izela Arenas, the daughter of former NBA All-Star Gilbert Arenas.

—Louisville will honor Denny Crum with a series of tributes during their season-opener against UMBC next Monday.

Louisville will recognize Crum with a moment of silence before Monday’s game, and will also host a special dedication for his seat at the KFC Yum! Center at halftime. Fans are encouraged to arrive early Monday and remain in their seats at halftime for these tributes.

Crum’s seat in Section 106 will be permanently changed to black and marked in his honor to distinguish it from the rest of the venue’s red seating. This gesture is similar to one previously complete for one of Crum’s mentors, John Wooden, at UCLA.

Crum’s family will be on hand for the dedication and will join the ceremony from the court bearing his name.

UofL players will have patches displaying Crum’s iconic red jacket on all of their uniforms this season, while the coaching staff will wear pins in his honor Monday night. The players will also wear a special shooting shirt pregame highlighting some of Crum’s most notable accomplishments.

Video tributes to Crum are planned throughout the evening, and more information will also be shared on the upcoming release of the Denny Crum Legacy Collection of apparel and other items, with a portion of the proceeds benefiting the Denny Crum Foundation.

—Louisville-Duke drew just shy of a million viewers on ESPN last Saturday.

—The depth charts for both Louisville and Virginia Tech are out.

—Guy’s fast.

—Jeff Goodman, Doug Gottlieb and Jeff Borzello discuss (video) Kenny Payne’s hot seat and don’t feel confident about him getting a third year at Louisville.

—Pat Forde breaks down the first CFP rankings, where Louisville sits at 13.

—The Athletic’s ACC hoops preview projects Louisville to finish 14th and says Kenny Payne is the coach in the league who most needs to win.

Coach who needs to win

Kenny Payne, Louisville

An exhibition loss to Division II Kentucky Wesleyan on Monday only confirmed how dire things have gotten at Louisville. Last season was the Cardinals’ worst of the modern era, and things don’t appear to be much better at the start of Payne’s second season. Louisville has too many resources (and too much pride) to be the national laughingstock it was a year ago; Payne, fairly or not, is already coaching for his job.

—The U of L field hockey team opened postseason play with a 3-2 win over Boston College in the ACC tournament quarterfinals on Tuesday. The third-seeded Cards will face No. 2 seed Duke this afternoon at 3:30.

—ESPN’s Charlie Creme initially excluded Louisville from his last preseason Bracketology. That was clearly a fuck up, as later in the day, Creme slotted the Cards into the field as a 5-seed.

—Here’s Jeff Walz’s media day address from Tuesday:

—C.L. Brown writes that Kenny Payne now has a serious uphill battle to fight both on and off the court.

—The Jack Harlow Foundation bought tons of local kids Halloween Costumes from Caufield’s.

—The latest bowl odds for the Louisville football team according to Bet Kentucky:

—The latest episode of the From the Pink Seats podcast is here.

—Jawhar Jordan’s first touchdown run was the No. 4 play in the ACC (video) last weekend.

—Eight new restaurants are opening in Louisville this month.

—The surprise changes to the NIT that the NCAA announced last week pissed off pretty much everybody.

No vote. No warning. A source on the men’s basketball oversight committee said they had not been given a heads-up. Nor was the National Association of Basketball Coaches informed, according to executive director Craig Robinson. Save for an email sent 30 minutes before the actual news dropped on Friday afternoon, no one had any advance notice that the 2024 NIT would undergo a wholesale change, eliminating automatic bids for all regular-season champions who fail to survive their conference tournament, with those instead going to the Power 6 teams with the top NET rankings who don’t make the NCAA Tournament. (The women’s NIT is not affected by these changes.)

The lack of transparency is wildly out of character, especially from an organization that painstakingly solicits feedback on even the smallest decision. And it left commissioners, who usually at least understand the rationale of a decision even if they don’t support it, unable to offer any explanation to angry athletic directors and coaches.

“Shocked,’’ said Atlantic 10 commissioner Bernadette McGlade, who was at her conference’s cross-country championships when she heard the news. “And my take is not really related to the event itself, to the NIT. My concern is a bigger picture concern: You have the NCAA leadership making a public declaration that six conferences are going to be treated preferentially, and in a protected class for access to a postseason NCAA event. That doesn’t seem fair.’’

—The Louisville defense is up to No. 15 in the country in stop rate.

—Homefield Apparel’s new Louisville bomber jacket is dropping Saturday.

—I’m right back to not being able to get enough of the Connor Stallions story.

—The CJ sports staff makes their picks for this weekend’s local college football games.

—Louisville is No. 2 in Matt McGavic’s latest ACC power rankings.

—Four-star cornerback Jayden Lewis, a recent Auburn de-commit, loved his weekend visit to U of L.

—It’s ACC tournament match day for the U of L men’s soccer team, which faces Pittsburgh in the first round of the event. Here’s a preview.


—The Athletic’s Kyle Tucker writes about John Calipari losing his way at Kentucky, a story that includes some pretty scathing quotes from anonymous former staff members at UK.

—College Football News projects a Louisville-Ole Miss Orange Bowl.

—A full game replay of the Duke win is available here.

—Mark Lieberman, God love him, is breaking down film from the Kentucky Wesleyan loss.

—Doug Bowman of 247 Sports previews Louisville-Virginia Tech.

—The Fayetteville Observer has Louisville dead last in its preseason ACC hoops power rankings.

—And finally, the Mike Rutherford Show returns from 3-6 this afternoon and will be less angry on 1450/96.1. You can stream it here.