Just Cardinal Hoops Talk . . . Really

Oy. it’s enough to give a guy heartburn. (Though that might be thanks to the gourmanderizing I perpetrated on myself last night right before bedtime.)

Lawsuits. Now x 2. Fans suing the NCAA. Players suing the NCAA.

Then there’s that litigation of former employees suing the school after being fired.

Now there’s that pizza splatter all over the football program and the university since that Papa J has swan-dived off the side of the mountain onto the rocks below, fashioning his own professional demise, leaving lots of pissed off folks in the U of L community.

So . . . for a breath of fresh air . . . can we talk about some actual Cardinal hoops for a bit? I mean Coach Mack and Jordan Nwora did a meet and greet day before yesterday?

Yes, but one other item first.

Signage. Continue reading Just Cardinal Hoops Talk . . . Really

Five but Not All ’13 Cards Sue NCAA

I am he/ As you are he/ As you are me/ And we are all together

Those would be the lyrics of the Beatles iconic tune that Russ Smith and Peyton Siva and Chane Behanan and Wayne Blackshear and Montrezl Harrell are likely not singing this day, if they’ve digested the gist of the lawsuit filed by their 2013 teammates against the NCAA.

Those plaintiffs are Luke Hancock and Gorgui Dieng and Tim Henderson and Michael Marra and Stephann Van Treese, who have in essence demanded that ruling body of college sports clear their names but not those of their teammates, declare the claimants again champions and winners of the victories taken away.

Maybe it’s just me, but the whole deal smells like those involved in the suit are throwing their teammates under the bus. Where’s the one for all, all for one team spirit?

And who’s the Walrus? Continue reading Five but Not All ’13 Cards Sue NCAA

Seedy K’s Premature Preseason Pigskin Presumptions

Unless you have a Phil Steele shrine in your man cave — votive candles, incense, 8×10 glossy of college football’s reigning guru, all nestled atop your Lamar-signed game jersey — you probably have no clue who Ed Marynowitz is.

OK, maybe you do . . . if you grab lunch regularly with the HVAC dudes in Roll Tide t-shirts and the plumbers in houndstooth ballcaps at the Popeyes on McFarland Road in Tuscaloosa. Even then that former administrator who has now moved on from his spot on the Crimson Tide football staff was never nearly as close to well known as, say, once beloved but now a hated rival Kirby Smart or don’t let the door hit you in the butt Lane Kiffin.

Obscure as Marynowitz duties as associate AD for football were, they inform why Nick Saban is a very very very very very good, great actually, and duh successful college football coach — arguably the best ever — and the mentor of your school, even if his name is Meyer or Fisher or Swinney or Patterson, is good and somewhat successful but a cut below.

Marynowitz’s duties were primarily to track other school’s assistant coaches and coordinators across the land, gather info and develop dossiers so that Saban will be way ahead of the curve when it comes time to replace his own assistants who move on. Like this off season, when he had about a half dozen empty seats in the coaching staff meeting room. Continue reading Seedy K’s Premature Preseason Pigskin Presumptions

College Hoopaholic Goes Pro (And Other Matters)

So, there’s this cheese I really like that I can only get at one place in town.

Gouda with truffles. Damn expensive, but so tasty I treat myself more often than I should.

Went to get some the other week, and the store was out, said they’d have another shipment in a month or so. Settled for something else the fromage expert behind the counter suggested . . .

. . . which was OK, but not what I really craved.

You can’t always get what you want, but if you try sometime you find you get what you need. Continue reading College Hoopaholic Goes Pro (And Other Matters)

Mitchell, Rozier & the Dean/Jordan Meme

So, if you happen to be a Louisville Cardinal fan and happened to be out and about last night and couldn’t watch in real time so you taped the Jazz/Rockets game to view later before bed or today, hoping that our main man in the Beehive State was able to lead his underdogs to another W in the Western semis . . .

. . . well . . . (Spoiler Alert!) fuhgettabout any prolongation of the series.

Buuuuuuuut, if you haven’t watched yet, just fast forward to the 3d Q, during which interlude, one Donovan Mitchell, former matriculator on the Belknap Campus, went . . .

. . . en fuego. (Or if you prefer the first translation Google spit out, en llamas.)

Donovan was, it ain’t hyperbole, Jordanesque. It was a fashion show of twists and swirls and crossovers and Eurosteps and reverses and banks and follows and deuces and treys. He tallied double deuces. Which, to put in proper context, was a greater sum for the period than the entirety of the home team, which just so happened to win more games this season than any other.

Plus he was dishing out no look dimes that were, dare I say it, Magical. Continue reading Mitchell, Rozier & the Dean/Jordan Meme

Cardinal Love in the Crescent City

I’m in New Orleans for JazzFest.

So, after my workout this morning, during which I wore one of those shirts the Cardinal soccer team donned when Lynn Stadium opened, I walked down to the corner to a coffee bistro to caffeinate.

A brother behind me in line asks if I really follow the Cards?

To which I replay, oh yeah, I’m a big, long time fan.

So then he asks, what years was it that Milt Wagner played?

That was early 80s. He was on the team that lost to Georgetown in the semis. And, he had to sit out a year because of a foot injury, but came back to play on the ’86 championship team.

The guy’s nodding, then asks me something about Pervis?

And, oh yeah, I interject, that loss to the Hoyas was right here in the Superdome.

Then he asks me another question about that era.

To which I reply, you tryin’ to test me, to see if I’m really a Card fan? If so, bring it, I’ve been following them since before you were born.

So he laughs, we chat, he’s from New Orleans, but shares how those early 80s Cardinal teams were his favorites.

After a few minute chat about U of L hoops, we bump fists and he exits.

About thirty seconds later, he walks back in the shop, points at me and says, “The McCray brothers. I love the McCray brothers. They were the best.”

— Seedy K

Cardinal Hoops: A Look Back & Stepping Ahead

There’s something in the air.

And the aroma — despite one last springtime cold front — is as sweet as honeysuckle.

But it came from out of the blue. Xavier blue.

When the in the realm of all matters insignificant memory passed through my mind before Chris Mack’s boffo intro, it should have been obvious then and there how anxious I was, we all were for a reinstitution of hope.

We were, frankly, predisposed to be pumped. Continue reading Cardinal Hoops: A Look Back & Stepping Ahead

Cardinal Hoops is Back to Where It Once Belonged

U of L basketball has turned the page, is starting a new chapter.

The windows have been thrown open, fresh air is circulating the premises.

And, while I’m tossing about worn clichés, it would be easy to fall into the trap of offering this: There’s a new sheriff in town.

Except that this new fella come down from upriver doesn’t seem like the guy who would fling open the swinging doors and swagger into Louie’s Saloon with an air of high authority, making sure all the boys at the bar saw his badge’s gleam in the gaslight. He’s more the dude who shows up late after a long day toiling at the livery stable, has a shot maybe two of sarsaparilla but rarely if ever too many then heads home to buss his bride on the cheek and tumble about with the kids.

So, then I arrive here: to say that a new era in Cardinal hoops has dawned. That the new guy in town, Chris Mack, looked out at the assembled to the phalanx of former hoopsters who thrilled us in the red & black, and proclaimed, “This is your program. I want each of you to know there are no different eras.

“This is Louisville basketball.”  Continue reading Cardinal Hoops is Back to Where It Once Belonged

Padgett, Pitino & the Cardinal Coaching Carousel Coulda Woulda

At the top, before I get to opinionizing, conjecturing, rumor mongering, innuendo disseminating and other stuff my phalanx of attorneys have advised me against, let me add my words of praise for David Padgett.

The fellow was dropped into a situation that was extremely difficult at best, and exasperatingly impossible at worst.

At every twist and turn, he comported himself with poise, class and humility.

David Padgett, dare I say it, is a mensch.

University of Louisville fans owe him a debt of gratitude for the stalwart way he handled an untoward situation.

I hold him in nothing short of the highest regard.

He has all the peripherals for a long and successful coaching career. I don’t know a Cardinal fan who doesn’t wish for his success. Continue reading Padgett, Pitino & the Cardinal Coaching Carousel Coulda Woulda

U of L Men’s Basketball Season Now Rests in Peace

It was more than poetic that on the first day of spring, snow fell.

And so did the Cardinals for the final time this year.

To lay to rest a dissatisfying season that shall be hard to forget though the oh so many adoring fans who showered their appreciation at the Yum! in the last week will wish they could.

The denouement was appropriate.

The moment was allegorical.  Continue reading U of L Men’s Basketball Season Now Rests in Peace