Louisville CardFile: St. Francis (Brooklyn)

joaniecardCorrected 11/25 10:12 am.

As has been the pattern this season, Card Nation attendees who actually showed up at the Yum! were late-ish arriving and small-ish numerically.

By the time many of them arrived at their seats, the rout of U of L’s latest plug du jour was a fait accompli.

Here’s how U of L opened against its fourth absurdly overmatched foe of the season:

Damion Lewis hit 1/2 FTs after being fouled while shooting. Full court press. Chinanu Onuaku missed a one-hand slam on an alley oop. Next trip down he canned a five foot J. Next trip he netted a follow. Full court press. Steal. Lewis tallied a fast break layup. Full court press. Quentin Snider banked in a sweet layin after a crossover dribble to lose his man. Full court press. Steal. Lewis scored on a follow shot. Full court press. Lewis tally +1.

15:37. First TV timeout. Cards 14 points, 4 steals, Terriers 4 points.


Boredom ensued. Continue reading Louisville CardFile: St. Francis (Brooklyn)

Louisville CardFile: North Florida

joaniecardThe International Debutante Ball, a coming out party for the daughters of the global hoity toity, is traditionally held in even numbered years in the Grand Ballroom of the Waldorf Astoria on the 29th of December.

Given this is an odd numbered year, thus no such affair, it was incumbent that there be some such significant debut this holiday season. Just to keep the world in balance, you understand, to maintain the clear delineation between the haves and have nots.

Presenting to the World of Hoops, Raymond Spalding, lover of “Fresh Prince of Bel Air,” the Bible, his mom’s baked cookies, Kevin Hart, blocked shots and deflections.

Your world awaits.

The rookie’s stats from yesterday’s 89-61 torching of North Florida tell some of the story. But not all of it. Continue reading Louisville CardFile: North Florida

Louisville CardFile: Pittsburgh

CardHelmetOn a topsy turvy college football weekend, full of upheaval, when Final Four projections were jarred out of focus, the quality of the 2015 Louisville Cardinals became crystal clear.

As if it already wasn’t, at least to those with a reasonably objective perspective.

U of L surrendered 35 second quarter points in a 45-34 loss to Pitt.

The Cards will end the regular season schedule either 7-5 or 6-6, depending on the outcome of next Saturday’s High Noon battle with arch-rival Kentucky. They will finish the campaign at bottom level bowl against a similarly less than successful opponent in Shreveport or Detroit or some such Styxian site.

This Louisville team, as we should have realized all along, despite the recent successes against lesser foes, is middle of the pack. A smidge above mediocre. Maybe. Definitely a several shelves below the top.

That’s the fact, Jack. Continue reading Louisville CardFile: Pittsburgh

Seedy K’s Peerless Pigskin Prognostications: Week XII

endimagesRollin’, rollin’, rollin’ . . . keep these games a rollin’.

Another weekend come and gone, another 4 to 1 correct prognosticatory ratio.

Thank you, thank you, vury much. Really, hold your applause, please.

Houston lifted off, though it was down to the last nanosecond what with the possibility that the whole mission would be scrapped. Surprising North Carolina continues to beat up on any league foe in its path. The Cards again survived a see saw affair at Papa J’s.

And the Wildcats, bless their coach’s dithering (in)competence, lost on a play that doesn’t even work on the sandlot where it was invented. The old I Hear My Mom Calling Me For Dinner play, which always ends up with a lonesome end untouched, crossing the goal line with the pigskin nestled in his arm, the nearest defender yards away and embarrassed.

So, yeah, I got those all correct.

Only Baylor proved that maybe that frosh QB needs some seasoning, and that they’re not quite ready for prime time. Also underscoring that Seedy K, your pigskin prediction pontiff, is far from perfectamundo. (Except for Week IX.)

The 4-1 weekend makes me 17-3 for the last four Saturdays, 36-19 for the entire campaign.

We got us some biggies this coming Saturday, pigskin pals, so let’s get this party started. Continue reading Seedy K’s Peerless Pigskin Prognostications: Week XII

Louisville: Hartford

joaniecardIn the wake of Louisville’s second overwhelming W in a row to start the campaign, 87-52 over Hartford, it seems to me I should be more excited. That I should be feeling something about these Cardinals more than this overbearing pall of ennui. That I should be more exhilarated by the arrival of many talented new Cards.

I love college hoops.

The Louisville Cardinals have been the great love of my life.

The beginning of another season has traditionally been one of high points of the year, an event which generated much excitement.

But . . . Samford was horrible. Hartford, even worse. The Hawks were beaten before the tip, at which their coach put a munchkin in the center circle, the other four back on D. The Hawks didn’t make any attempt at offensive rebounding. Five and a half minutes in, Chinanu Onuaku already had ten points, several rebounds and a block, and was probably feeling ready to challenge Tim Duncan.

Despite U of L’s youth, many new personalities and the reality that it’s a team just finding its rhythm, these games were like the varsity matched up against the middle school Chess Club and the Geeks Who Game, the kids that pass on lunch to play World of Warcraft.

B*O*R*I*N*G. Continue reading Louisville: Hartford

Louisville CardFile: Virginia

CardHelmetThe horn signaling the end of Louisville’s tough 38-31 W over UVa was still honking, when the email to the Cardinal faithful arrived.

“Bound” it  screamed in a paint-washed font, over an image of a Cardinal running back in Heisman pose.

“Pre-Order Bowl Tickets Now”

Assured of at least a break even season with its sixth victory yesterday, U of L is now “bowl eligible.” Low bar that such an achievment might be, it is the new gravity in college football.

Which means the Cardinals will likely be spending a portion of the holidays in Detroit perhaps for the Quick Lane Bowl, or maybe Shreveport for the Camping World Independence Bowl (which will forever and always be the Poulan Weedeater Independence Bowl to me), or relatively bucolic El Paso for the Sun Bowl.

The Louisville Athletic Department, on the hook for a designated block of tickets wherever the destination, hopes the fan base follows along to savor the game, and enjoy some of the exotic local attractions. Like, say, in Shreveport, the Water Works Museum or Walter B Jacobs Memorial Nature Park.

In retail, the concept is known as a “loss leader.” Selling certain popular items at less than cost to get people in the store, and enhance the brand. Continue reading Louisville CardFile: Virginia

Louisville CardFile: Samford

joaniecardOne game does not a season make.

Which is my attempt at some literacy, while being cautious, and offering the following.

Hardly any of the many questions extant with the ’15-’16 Cardinals were answered with certainty in U of L’s opening night 86-45 decimation of Samford.

Scott Padgett’s Bulldogs entered the Yum! with tails wagging, left with those tails between their legs.

What we do know is that Louisville should have battered its lesser foe. And did so.

Expectations for the evening were met. It’s not always been so early on in seasons past for the Cards during the Pitino Era.

All well and good. Continue reading Louisville CardFile: Samford

Seedy K’s Peerless Pigskin Prognostications: Week XI

endimagesWell, I guess a learned a lesson that I should have long ago.

Nick Saban’s Alabama Crimson Tide is indeed a brand, as I wrote in this space last week. And that select section committee is thus inclined to give the Houndstoothers the benefit of the doubt, which it did last week by placing them in the Final Four despite a home L to Ole Miss. But that the Tide is also, despite that inexplicable lapse against the Johnny Rebs, a formidable outfit more often than not.

I should have learned never to doubt the Bama, if the stakes are high. Though the pigskin power does slip up on occasion, as in last year’s semis against THE Ohio State U..

So, yeah, I picked LSU to win in Tuscaloosa, which was a boneheaded play, and wrong.

But I did run the rest of the table. Clemson, Okie State, UGa and the Cards all prevailed.

The 4-1 weekend makes me 13-2 over the last three weekends, and 32-18 on the year.

I’d say I’ve rounded into midseason form. I am beyond bowl eligible.

This week’s picks: Continue reading Seedy K’s Peerless Pigskin Prognostications: Week XI

Louisville CardFile: Kentucky Wesleyan

joaniecardJoe Louis, the “Brown Bomber,” iconic Heavyweight Champion of the World mid 20th C, defended his title more than a dozen times in a two year period, easily conquering all those comers. Such was the nature of his dominance, that those foes came to be known collectively as the “Bum of the Month Club.”

U of L’s upcoming non-conference home schedule looks much the same, and includes a couple of schools that even the most ardent hoops fan has never heard of. Samford. Hartford. North Florida. St. Francis Brooklyn. Grand Canyon. Eastern Michigan. Kennesaw State. Western Kentucky. Missouri Kansas City. Utah Valley.

Call them the Schleppers of November and December.

While such a schedule can be viewed as giving the finger to season ticket holders paying a Benjamin per ticket as tariff to sit through these tilts, it is also legit for The Rick to say this is what this particular edition of the Cards needs.

The ’15-’16 campaign is is shaping up as the most fascinating yet in the Pitino Era. Continue reading Louisville CardFile: Kentucky Wesleyan

Louisville CardFile: Syracuse

CardHelmetIn the pleasant aroma of Louisville’s 41-17 evisceration of the Syracuse Orange, there is but one question.

And it is not where in the hell were all those U of L is a football school fans on a photogenic, weather immaculate, Howard Schnellenberger-perfect, leaves aglow, Grantland Rice crisp, autumn afternoon? Because they sure weren’t at Papa J’s, where the empty faded red seats just about equaled those filled with the base that chose to attend.

No, the real question is, what factors contributed to the first sighting this season of the Bobby Petrino offense fans have been expecing since Tom Jurich cut the devil’s bargain to bring the scandal-prone coach back for a second go round?

As usual, there are many reasons for the offensive onslaught that played out yesterday, each responsible in a greater or lesser percentage, depending on your personal perspective.

 * * * * *

Before I mention Kyle Bolin, whom I suppose to be most fans immediate factor numero uno, I must go to what has been the major offensive flaw all season. The offensive line. Continue reading Louisville CardFile: Syracuse