It is for me the most charming aspect of The Jim, where the Louisville Cardinal nine under normal circumstances spends spring evenings, whiling away at America’s pastime.
I’m not referring to the bucolic berm beyond the fence where a caught fly ball is marked 7 on your scorecard, the one where kids play tag and catch and push each other down the slope and sometimes pay attention to the game.
Nor the crossed Louisville Sluggers outside, a sign of our city’s significant contribution to the the game.
I’m talking about the railroad tracks beyond the fence in right, where the screeching and whistling of commerce on wheels harkens back to that more pastoral time when baseball and traveling from sea to shining sea were new and adventurous.
A great lament for U of L athletics is what might have been for this season’s loaded baseball team? It’s certainly worthy of consideration, yet that’s not really what this is about.
In fact, mea culpa, the lede is a ruse of sorts, a way to hoodwink Glorious Editor of cardchronicle.com that this is within the parameters of the purpose of our fan site. As well as his bosses at the home office. It’s one of the sites where I double post these sports musings along with my vanity sports blog.
What this is really about is how for my generation — We were the war children/ Born 1945 — baseball was the American imperative. Continue reading Dads/ Sons/ Baseball: An Essay for My Father
In her piece at theathletic.com about how Charles Minlend Jr. ended up committing to continue his graduate studies on the Belknap Campus, Danielle Lerner tells this spicy tale:
In his three seasons as a high-scoring guard at San Francisco, he was often spotted dancing down the street on his way to class or practice. To put himself in the right frame of mind, before games he would curate weekly playlists spanning a variety of genres. The playlist content sometimes depended on who the week’s opponents were and sometimes on Minlend’s mood.
In advance of the 2020 WCC tournament, which would end up being the last week before the season shut down, Jack Harlow’s “What’s Poppin’” was the final song to pulse through Minlend’s headphones before he walked into the arena. The catchy single by the Louisville rapper includes the lyric, “I’m at the club with the basketball team / Me and the Cardinals are sharing a section.”
Jack Harlow. Ace Recruiter. Who knew?
Earlier in the week, after declaring for the Transfer Portal, Minlend listed these potential landing spots: Arizona, Indiana, Gonzaga, BYU, Butler, Arkansas and Mississippi State.
No University of Louisville.
Credit mind games. Continue reading Contemplating the Cards: Minlend’s Subliminal Recruitment & More
As if you hadn’t noticed, I’m somewhat of an obsessive when it comes to U of L Cardinal basketball.
There have been times in the days of yore when I allowed the fortunes (or misfortunes) of the Cards to dictate my well being. Not so much anymore, but, eh, you know . . .
Because of my fanaticism, you might say I’m a reliquary of Cardinal hoops memories.
(OK, I’m making myself laugh here. Though it is far from the only purpose of this little diversion, I vowed to somehow use that new word I just learned — reliquary — in the next thing I wrote. Tom Waits is quoted in NYT, using it in reference to the passing of his friend, noted music producer Hal Willner. So I have.)
Anyhow, back to the biz at hand.
In response to my recent gamecap of the Cardinals’ L to UCLA in the ’75 national semi-final, one regular member of my commentariat, send me a missive with the following list:
Best teams in U of L history by rank: Continue reading Seedy K Makes a List: Top 10 Cardinal Hoops Teams
To help combat March Sadness, this is the sixth of a series of recaps of significant games in Cardinal history, contemporaneously rewatched, said freshly minted posts to be presented as if the games were played the night before. — c d k
All’s well that ends with nets around the neck. At least in college basketball.
The University of Louisville captured its second national title in a 7th Final Four appearance with a 72-69 win over favorite, highly heralded Duke, to establish beyond peradventure that the Cardinals are the Team of the 80s, arguably, the premier program in all of college hoops.
But . . .
. . . with 12:18 left, the situation was dire. To say the least. Peril was afoot.
Twelve seconds earlier, Billy Thompson committed his fourth personal while hitting the boards for a rebound. Dave Henderson made two FTs, increasing the Blue Devils advantage to 4, 52-48.
Then Milt Wagner perpetrated his fourth. Mark Alarie netted a couple more charity tosses, increasing Duke’s margin to six. Continue reading Louisville CardFile: Duke ’86
Unlike other recent posts in this series, an attempt to hold March Sadness at bay, this shall not, for reasons that should become obvious, be a recap. But, simply my thoughts and memories after watching a video of the 1975 UCLA/ U of L semi-final, for the first time since I walked, dazed and disappointed, out of the arena that afternoon in San Diego.
One of the constant reminders of this strange and perilous moment in our lives is that we must accept the bitter with the sweet. That there is a yin and a yang to life.
So it is with Cardinal hoops, like every other aspect of our existence.
It is all too easy to conjure up the great disappointments of my Cardinal fandom.
U.S. Reed. The Duke meltdown. First round defeats to lessers. Losing to Towson State. Failing to close against Chet Walker and Bradley. This campaign’s abrupt ending.
There are two that resonate the most for me.
Falling to SMU in the regional semis in ’67, when we could have played the last weekend on our home court.
And . . . UCLA ’75.
Until a few days ago, I had never even thought of rewatching the L to the Bruins. Frankly, I never even tried to see if it was available on the interweb. Continue reading Cardinal Remembrance: UCLA ’75
To help combat March Sadness, this is the fourth of a series of recaps of significant games in Cardinal history, contemporaneously rewatched, said freshly minted posts to be presented as if the games were played the night before. — c d k
It is at this juncture, with the 2013 Louisville Cardinals one victory over Michigan away from the school’s third national crown, that I feel compelled to offer a mea culpa.
And an apology to the star of the 72-68 national semi W over tough Wichita State. I am deeply sorry for my early season negativitude about him that somehow may have adversely been detrimental to Luke Hancock. My bad. Obviously.
I am thinking of Rick Pitino’s comments during Hancock’s sit out year after transferring from George Mason. The Rick has been known to hyperbolize on occasion.
“Best player on the team.”
“Smartest player on the team.”
Then he named Hancock a captain before he’d even donned a Cardinal uni in the Yum!.
Then LH started playing. And started clanking treys off the side of the backboard, dribbling to the hoop like he’s got the lumbago, and I’m wondering what the hell the big deal is, while screaming to myself, “Put in Blackshear for heavens’ sake.”
Of course, The Rick was absolutely right, while I was so very very wrong. Continue reading Louisville CardFile: Wichita State
To help combat March Sadness, this is the third of a series of recaps of significant games in Cardinal history, contemporaneously rewatched, said freshly minted posts to be presented as if the games were played the night before. — c d k
“Meet me in St. Louis, Louis/ Meet me at the fair”
I mean, really, how about that?
For the first time since winning their second crown in ’86, and the first time in the Rick Pitino era, the University of Louisville Cardinals will be among the last four standing at the fair that is the Final Four in St. Louis.
It took some truly serious Cardinal duende to accomplish the task against John Beilein’s upstart, red hot West Virginia Mountaineer contingent.
Before Taquan Dean couldn’t get squared on that last second baseline jumper that would have won it in regulation, the Louisville Cardinals scored on — count ’em — nine straight possessions. Even with that, the Cards needed an extra five to close the deal, completing a comeback as lovely as any ever.
Outscoring They Who Shall Ever Be Known As The Pittsnoggles 16-8 in OT for the 93-85 Elite Eight conquest doesn’t come close to revealing just what the Cards needed to do to secure this victory.
Because, with 2:45 left in the 1st, Louisville was down, uh, 20, at 18-38. Continue reading Seedy K’s GameCap: West Virginia
To help combat March Sadness, this is the second of series of recaps of significant games in Cardinal history, contemporaneously rewatched, said freshly minted posts to be presented in the coming weeks as if the games were played the night before. — c d k
Four days short of three years to the date, I’ve got an answer for you, Wayne Duke.
“Absolutely. The Cards most certainly are now.”
Checking out of our hotel in Indy that magical morning after the Cards conquered UCLA for the ’80 NCAA title, my gang was bantering with the Big Ten commissioner.
“Sure, you’re #1 in the country,” he kidded with an understanding of the lay of the land in the Dark and Bloody Ground of the Commonwealth, “but will you be #1 when you get back home in Kentucky?”
“Well, Wayne, there’s no question today.”
In a packed, intense and loud Stokely Athletic Center yesterday in Knoxville, the Louisville Cardinals, second fiddle in the minds of Big Blue fans for decades, heck forever, moved the b-ball capitol of the commonwealth 75 miles west from the Lexington to Louisville. Continue reading Louisville CardFile: Kentucky
When I was a kid I made up a basketball game played with dice.
I’d play out the games, while announcing them. During the LIT, I’d hand print out the bracket and play out the whole tourney. Somehow the Atherton Rebels, where my brother was, and I’d knew I’d attend years later, somehow would more often than not get a friendly roll of the dice.
That precious memory came to me, when I learned what a couple of twenty somethings — Joshua Safran and Jackson Weimer — are doing. They’re going to play out the entire NCAA tournament, on a now extinct video game, March Madness 2010, using an XBbx 360, and stream it over the net on the Twitch Channel of ebaumsworld.com.
They started with a Selection Sunday show for “Corona Madness,” which they produced in Weimer’s basement.
It’s just damn charming, the kind of thing I used to do. Continue reading Hoopaholic’s Gazette: Perfect Tourney Replacement & Coachspeak
To help combat March Sadness, this is the first of series of recaps of significant games in Cardinal history, contemporaneously rewatched, said freshly minted posts to be presented in the coming weeks as if the games were played the night before. — c d k
U of L’s national title battle with UCLA knotted tight at 54, Darrell Griffith’s signature moment finally arrived Monday night, with 2:21 remaining on the game clock at Market Square Arena.
The moment the City of Louisville has been waiting and hoping for since rumors started circulating just short of a decade ago, about a couple of young teen phenoms at DuValle Junior High.
The moment Cardinal fans have been waiting for since Grif and his runnin’ partner Bobby Turner committed to play for U of L, and this year’s Tournament MVP promised the city a national title.
The moment Darrell Griffith willed to existence through talent and his hard work, especially last summer in sweatbox Crawford Gym, dribbling through traffic cones, and hoisting thousands of jumpshots, to overcome the embarrassment of sitting most of crunch time of the Cards disappointing NCAA elimination last season against Arkansas.
With 5:57 to go, Griffith had kept the Cards within reach, after a 6-0 Bruin run, converting a +1 on an oop from Wiley Brown to pull within 48-50. But the Cards nemesis in their previous two final weekend visits under Denny Crum sandwiched a couple Mike Sanders FTs and a KiKi Vandeweghe layup around a DG jumper to lead 54-50 at the 4:32 mark.
The Bruins did not score again. Continue reading Seedy K’s GameCap: UCLA