During a renovation a few years back of Franklin Field, America’s oldest college football stadium, an electrician found a long lost document in a rusting can behind some bricks being replaced in a south end vomitorium.
By coincidence the fellow just happened to be Francis Bagnell IV, great grand son of Reds Bagnell, former Penn pigskin All-American and Maxwell Trophy winner.
Among other rules of the game written on the parchment, dubbed at the time, “The Lost Scrolls of the Gridiron,” was this:
The winner of the game shall be the squad scoring the highest number of points registered in a manner consistent the other rules contained herein, regardless of when and in what manner they were scored, at the moment when the reigning official fires the gun to end the contest, or the coaches of the competing schools have shaken hands indicating their mutual acquiescence of the end of the contest.
That proclamation from the Ancients certainly inured to the benefit of the University of Louisville Cardinals Saturday afternoon in a way less than full Doak Campbell Stadium.
U of L 31, Florida State 23.
So, for the purposes of calculating wins and losses, it matters not that with 1:49 to play before halftime, after a M Cunningham to Jordan Watkins touchdown pass, Louisville, to that instant in the battle, mature and confident, led in commanding fashion, 31-7. Nor that, subsequent thereto, the Cardinals were not only not able to score, but only registered three first downs, but two in the 2d half.*
*Louisville wasn’t the only school prevailing in a similar situation. Michigan State beat Nebraska, even though they didn’t get any 1st downs in the second half.
Cards scored more points. Cards, despite their abject offensive ineptitude after intermission, win.
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So, who among you guys and gals who like to make a wager on the outcome of such games, had this parlay?
That U of L would win thanks to a last minute interception two weeks in a row.
The Cards were on life support, on the precipice — take your pick of clichés — when, like Mighty Mouse, Kei’Trel came to save the day, with :48 on the clock, with a nifty, absolutely necessary, absolutely game saving interception in the Cardinals’ Red Zone at the 5 yard line.
Can I get a Witness?
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Despite the desperate woefulness of the 0-4 Seminoles, Louisville looked like the real deal for the first 28:11.
On both sides of the ball.
In the opening half, despite that last minute Seminole score, the Cards were righteous.
The OL was opening holes. Cunningham was hitting his receivers. Tyler Harrell finally showed what his coach’s hype was about. The D, despite the major loss of Monty Montgomery, held State to 15 yards on the ground.
Then, sphincters tightened.
Fortunately, the D hung tough in the second half. Because U of L got nothing on the other side of the ball.
Florida State made some adjustments during intermission.
The Cards’ offense weren’t able to figure it out.
The loss of Braden Smith didn’t help. Seeing him sitting forlornly on the sideline in one of those serious Gould’s Medical Supplies’ leg braces was ominous.
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What was Satterfield thinking, when he called that timeout right before halftime, giving State one more shot at a score?
Why was one of the refs eating skittles between plays?
Fans all have their own peculiarities which we believe affects the outcome of a game. During the half, I was getting a bit cold, so I donned the Oregon sweatshirt I compulsively purchased during the Quack’s W over Ohio State.
After which, U of L didn’t play worth a you know what.
During the clock stoppage for YaYa Diaby’s injury on the loser’s last drive, I turned to Doc, with whom I was watching the strange victory, and said, “We haven’t played worth a damn since I put on this Duck shirt at the half.”
Which I then ripped off. Clark pick. Boom. Just sayin’.
For any number of reasons, I love it when U of L plays the early games. Noon on football Saturdays, and hoops Saturdays. For one, I’m just anxious for the games. For another, I hate when the game before runs over.
So, I was a Nervous Norvus in need of a transfusion, when the BC/ Mizzou game went to OT. Fortunately, it didn’t last long. Though it took the Deuce awhile to get to the Card game for kickoff. Couldn’t miss that insipid postgame interview with Eagles’s coach Jeff Hafley. Viewers really needed to find out how proud he was of his guys.
The flip side. (Warning schadenfreude alert.) Arch Rival’s fans did have to go the app to see the beginning of their team’s game which followed the Cards.
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Next up for the 3-1 Cardinals: Surprising Wake Forest.
The Demon Deacons are 4-0, 2-0 in the league, legit, and, on their home Truist Field turf, will be itching to avenge their 24 point L to the Cards in last year’s finale.
12:30 kickoff on Regional Sports Network. Wonder why this one wasn’t picked up by The World Wide Leader?
— c d kaplan