Louisville Card File: South Florida

dunikcardThere are but a few maintenance kind of things you can hope for when playing a woefully hapless opponent like the South Florida Bulls.

1. Break a good sweat.

2. Don’t suffer any serious injuries.

3. Don’t develop bad habits because of the innate sloppiness of such affairs.

4. The team plane doesn’t crash when flying from relatively balmy Florida to the New Arctic Circle that is Kentuckiana.

It appears the Cardinals have met such criteria . . . mostly.

The Rick kept the press on so U of L wouldn’t fall in a funk. So everybody seemed to get in a good workout. Though one has to wonder, given the tenor of the game why Mango didn’t play more, given it was overall his most impressive performance to date.

13 minutes on the hardwood. Hard to explain.

Russ Smith was apparently poked in the eye. Though, if the announcers mentioned it, it passed me by. Which might have explained why his dribbling nonsense was present on several occasions.1

Silent L suffered a cut on his jaw. No biggie.

As for the development of bad habits, I doubt it’s a problem. There was that Smith gaffe. In the second half, when U of L was cruising by a triple figure margin, they gave up an uncontested back door dunk. And on the D end, there was a loose ball with three Cards within reach. All took off down court. None went for the ball. The Bulls maintained possession.

For several seconds until, as was their wont, they threw it out of bounds.

There have been no reports of an airline mishap.2

* * * * *

While looking for something to fill time late, color commentator Tim Welsh said of the Bulls, “they’re not as bad as a game like this.”

Could have fooled me.

The Bulls committed 7 more turnovers (23) than they scored field goals (16). They had the rock swiped 13 times. Louisville tallied 35 points off those mistakes.

The home team couldn’t even get the ball inbounds. One time a Bull, trying the schoolyard ploy of throwing it off a Cardinal with his back turned, bounced it out of bounds instead. U of L’s ball. Another time, a Bull threw it out of bounds at Louisville’s end, from out of bounds under his own basket.

This was an absurdly incompetent basketball team.

* * * * *

Against UConn, surging Wayne Blackshear, a 79% FT shooter on the season, inexplicably went ofer 4 at the line.

Last night, he was back on his feed. Fouled on an attempted three midway through the opening half, he canned the trio of charity tosses, winning the stuffed panda for his best gal.

Sixteen points, on 5/6 shooting (3/4 from beyond the arc), a couple of boards, a couple of steals, a blocked shot. In 25 minutes.

All those things I said about Montrezl Harrell not being ready for the next level, that he really should stay for more seasoning . . . fuhgettaboutit.

He gone.

He’s starting to look like a legit offensive threat, within 12 feet of the hoop. If his improvement arc continues, his stock as a 1st round pick will solidify.

Terry Rozier — have I mentioned he’s been my favorite new Cardinal all season — had 9 points, 5 assists and three steals. More important, in 28 minutes at the point, 0 turnovers. As in none. Zilch. Zed. Nil.

As mentioned above, Mango Mathiang continues to improve. He displayed several nifty moves, including a reverse jump hook to up Louisville’s lead early to 8-4. 10 points, 2 rebounds and 2 steals. In an inexplicably measly 13 minutes on the court.

Have I mentioned that I like when Luke Hancock is handling the ball and directing traffic? So I have. That he and Blackshear now play on the court at the same time, it works even better, though it makes the Cards a might small.

* * * * *

In the “hype” before the game, play by play guy Jason Benetti said, “There’s a lot of buzz around Tampa for this game.” While the camera panned a mostly empty arena.

Studio analyst Dino Gaudio showed why he’s not coaching anymore. And why he’s on the U, instead of the other ESPN family of networks. He talked about how Louisville is playing without a point guard, and never mentioned Terry Rozier’s name.

Dino, do your homework, dude.

* * * * *

The zebras had to go to the monitor to see which Bull they had just called a foul on?

Uh, what?

* * * * *

Louisville has the highest scoring margin in the land.

A 39 point W should pad the lead.

* * * * *

Next up: Huge game in the Yum! against Cincy.

Let’s hope the team and fans are more fired up than the last big game at home, the L to Memphis State.

— Seedy K

4 thoughts on “Louisville Card File: South Florida

  1. USF Bulls need a heart implant, not transplant, as they are not only hapless, but totally heartless; recognizing their incompetence early, they phoned it in early. Does Heath have foto’s of the AD or USF prez?
    I concur with TR’s value, but would like to see improved finishing when he does take it to the hoop. I would think is 3pt % far exceeds his in-the-paint fg %. Invaluable rebounding defense and calming distribution as long as he doesn’t try to “Russ-it” too much in the lane.

  2. Wait a minute, Poncho….not 2 weeks ago you had us playing Bob Morris in the NIT…which is it? NIT also rans or NCAA contenders? Or, are you striding the fence until the ball falls one way or the other? Hmmmmmmm……….

    1. I am encouraged for how well we’ve looked against, in reality or Richard Shermanese, MEDIOCRE, I said MEDIOCRE, competition. Until I see how we perform against a defensive minded UC team this next week though, I am not sure that in spite of our current lofty poll ratings we are that different a team than we were. The Bearcats will definitely challenge our front court like no one other than Seedy’s favorite kayuts, and if the play we have been treated to by the “L” and an evolving Mathiang, and a Steady Steven VT I will be happy to look forward to not facing Robert Morris !
      he real deal Poncho is btw in Naptown and I believe still has a contracting/construction business from where he nails shots from the corner !

  3. I too am dismayed that Mango played so little when he was playing so well, far and away the best this year and he just continues to improve. But I have a theory as to why. Perhaps Ricky P, having told us ad nauseam that he doesn’t see much of a future here for Mango is trying to make that come true by not giving him a chance to become a real fixture for us. He is at least as good as Georgi was as a frosh. With regard to Silent L, I have to agree with Chuck. He is probably gone and just like Georgi, who doesn’t even play much in blowouts, he should stay in school and learn to play basketball.

Comments are closed.