LOUISVILLE NEEDS TO BE DOMINANT
I wouldn’t say that Louisville played down to the competition last week but they definitely didn’t have the game that was expected against Georgia Tech. Tech has improved its skill positions overall but they still don’t have the talent that UofL has.
Murray State will obviously be overmatched but Louisville needs to take the opportunity to show that it can be dominant. We’ve seen this program have minor issues with FCS programs in the past and that just can’t happen this week. UofL should be in a position to not only fine-tune the issues we saw last week but also play some young guys. In my opinion, this should be an “empty the bench” situation after halftime.
JACK PLUMMER HAS TO CLEAN UP THE ISSUES FROM LAST WEEK
Jack Plummer had a bad game last week. The second half was better but the bar was very low from what we all saw in the first half. Plummer missed wide-open receivers through about the mid-point of the second half and he didn’t display the ability to push the ball down the field. This offense only goes as far as Jack Plummer takes it. I think that needs to be realized.
With those things being said, Plummer needs to rely on his help. The offense got going once he took the easy throws (though most were designed that way) and stopped searching for the big play. After that, we saw that he has multiple guys who can make a play with the ball in their hands.
WILL WE SEE MORE AGGRESSION FROM RON ENGLISH?
I was openly skeptical of the decision to bring Ron English on from Purdue as the defensive coordinator. But after watching practices, I felt that maybe we would see a change in the play calling compared to what I saw at Purdue last season. Linebackers were showing blitzes and corners and safeties were blitzing from the secondary. it was a far cry from the base looks I consistently saw with Purdue as well as the blitzing linebackers coming from 5-6 yards away.
Well, my fears seem to be a bit warranted as UofL didn’t bring much pressure last week and relied on Ashton Gillotte and the defensive line to get home. I expected them to blitz more because of the talent they have in the secondary. We saw this last season once Bryan Brown had the guys to cover in one-on-one situations. He brought a lot more pressure than he had in the past. It may not be this week, but I’d love to see him at least try some different looks with third down pressure against Murray State.
SPECIAL TEAMS WILL BE SPECIAL
Reigning special teams player of the week Brock Travelstead put to bed any concerns about the UofL kicking game. He looked good in all three aspects of his game and I think having to kick in a few different scenarios was important for him. I think he will have a chance to have one of the better seasons for a specialist in the country.
The other aspect that I expect to have a big game is the return game. They may not have many opportunities to return kicks but punt returns should produce some big returns. I would be surprised if Kevin Coleman doesn’t get a score in this game.