Bowl games. Conference play begins. NFL playoffs.
And the Holidaze, which means lots of parties, extra time for cookies in the coffee room at work, hanging out at night with pals.
Lots o’ time for sports talk.
And, bottom line, sports fans, even those who love the same team or school, love to argue over this or that.
The Louisville Cardinal faithful are no exception.
So, I got to thinking what could spur U of L fans, or even those who just observe Cardinal sports dispassionately, to some serious back and forth.
So, I came up with these five contemplations, looking to hear what my readers think?
ONE. Lamar Jackson has just won the Heisman and every other major player of the year award in college pigskin. He is almost unanimously considered the best player in football this season. When entering the NFL draft, his predecessor Teddy Bridgewater was considered by many to have been the best Louisville Cardinal athlete ever in any sport.
So, here’s the scenario: U of L has made the CFP, bested Oklahoma in its semi-final and is about to meet Coach Khaki’s vaunted Michigan Wolverines for the national title.
Who would you rather have playing QB for the Cardinals?
LJ or Teddy B? Teddy B or LJ?
Who ya got?
TWO. Louisville’s been blessed with a number of exceptional football coaches. Two stand out.
Bobby Petrino is considered an offensive savant. He took Jackson’s talent and molded him into a transcendent signal caller. Howard Schnellenberger won a national title at Miami, then came to Louisville, where his vision and coaching skills kickstarted the Cards ascendance into the gridiron upper echelon.
So, in that mythical national title battle against the Wolverines mentioned above, who would you rather have preparing the team and on the sideline to make any in game adjustments?
Bobby P or The Schnell? The Schell or Bobby P?
Who ya got?
THREE. Louisville has dispatched Xavier’s Musketeers in the national semi-final and, looking for its fourth national crown in hoops, is preparing to meet resurgent UCLA 48 hours later on the final Monday of the season.
The Cards current coach Rick Pitino has won two crowns, one at rival Kentucky, one with the Cards in 2013. He’s in the Hall of Fame.
Protegee of legendary John Wooden, former Cardinal coach Denny Crum built the program into a national powerhouse, and won two crowns. He is in the Hall of Fame.
Which coach would you want preparing the Cards, and making in game adjustments, for that championship tilt against the Bruins?
The Rick or Denny? Denny or The Rick?
Who ya got?
FOUR. U of L has ended three mens’ basketball seasons as national champion?
The school’s women’s team has made it to the championship game, but not been able to grab the crown. Jeff Walz has had several top five recruiting classes in a row, and has his team poised to become a legit national contender.
The school’s soccer team has made it to the national title game once during Coach Ken Lolla’s reign. This year they made it to the Elite Eight, and have some young stars, making the future look bright.
The school’s baseball team has become a juggernaut and constant contender during the Dan McDonnell era. They’ve been to the College World Series three times, and the Super Regional three more times. McDonnell has proven a savvy recruiter, getting some serious ballplayers, mostly from up north, to come and play at Patterson Field.
U of L’s pigskinners knocked on the door of the CFP. The reigning Heisman Trophy winner resides on the Belknap Campus for at least one more season.
Which of these Cardinal sports is most likely to win a national title first? Jeff Walz’s women hoopsters? Ken Lolla’s futballers? Dan McDonnell’s nine? Bobby P’s pigskinners?
Who ya got?
FIVE. New Year’s Eve 2016 is a Big Day for U of L sports.
Perhaps too big a day.
The Cards play LSU for the first time ever in the Citrus Bowl, kicking off at 11:00 AM. U of L’s highly ranked hoopsters meet highly ranked Indiana on the hardwood in Indy, tipping off at half past noon.
Which game is more important?
On your mark. Get set. Go. One and all, state your opinions and case for it in the comment section.
And, hey, keep it classy, Card Nation.
— Seedy K