Louisville Card File: UPike Exhibition

There were some important moments during last night’s opening exhi against Pikeville.

At the 15:15 mark of the opening half, during the first media timeout, came the first of what shall be thousands of references to Louisville’s “national champion” cheerleaders.

At the 13:19 mark of the opening half, U of L, leading 16 nil at that juncture, gave up its first bucket of the season (though unofficial since the game and scoring technically don’t count).

At the 13:11 mark of the opening half came the first appearance of The Future — Wayne Blackshear.

At the 10:30 mark of the opening half, during another media timeout, came the first of what shall be thousands of references to Louisville’s “ten-time and defending national champion” LadyBirds. Which contingent this season has bigger hair than ever — a good thing — and is (count ‘em) 36 strong. Deep roster, the LadyBirds.

At the 3:34 mark of the opening half came the first of what shall be thousands of video wall images of the iconic Boogie Man, bless his heart.

At the 2:35 mark of the opening half came the first of what shall be thousands of visuals of an injured Cardinal limping off the court. This time it was The Future.

* * * * *

A disturbing sign that this season might not be as successful for the Cards as fans hope came during the Fan Choice timeout feature.

The crowd chose AC/DC’s “Back in Black” over a couple of other “back” themed songs, Jackson 5′s “I Want You Back,” and the obvious choice, the correct choice, the most appropriate choice, Thin Lizzy’s “The Boys Are Back In Town.”

I’m telling you, Card fans, this could be hard to overcome.

Sing it, Phil:

* * * * *

It’s hard to glean much from this kind of game. Some observations:

While the Card didn’t have many sets to run against UPike’s zone, they ran what they had in place with relative ease and dispatch. Players seemed to be where they were supposed to and made good decisions for the most part.

I liked the hustle, especially of Gorgui Dieng and Jared Swopshire, though I suspect the latter might languish more than I’d personally like on the bench. I loved his follow score at the 1st half buzzer, which came on the heels of 2 Zach Price tip ins.

In the 2d half, Chane Behanan took a long pass under the hoop on a run out. He ball faked and put it in for a score, without needing that Bobby Turner-style single dribble.

It’s obvious Angel Nunez isn’t going to get much PT this season. But he sure looks like a player. I haven’t seen a player glide down the court like him since Clem Haskins back in his heyday.

I hope Bullet Justice can do the deal, but back up point guard remains an issue. Peyton Siva must remain healthy and on the court for this team to be any factor nationally this season.

Rakeem Buckles, Stephan Van Treese and Russ Smith — injured all — watched in street clothes.

U of L was 14/25 from the charity stripe. That’s a stat that’s relevant no matter the foe. 56% is NOT going to git er done. Nor is 28% (5/18) from beyond the arc.

* * * * *

For all The Rick’s puffery about Tim Henderson, and how he could be a factor this season, the walk on did not play.

* * * * *

I thought it interesting that a team located in Pikeville, Ky would have a roster that includes players from Chicago, Milwaukee, Philly, the DC area, Jersey, Daytona Beach and LA.

– Seedy K


  1. cbcard
    Posted October 27, 2011 at 3:14 pm | Permalink

    Henderson is injured. Of course most of our team has been for several years. Gotta wonder about that. Either the billy goat is pissed at us too or something is strange with our trainer and practices.

    And I saw Wednesday morning the make up of the U Pike roster. I figure Pitino should hire their head recruiter. If that guy can get big city kids to a school 65 miles from the closest interstate he has got to be great.

  2. Kadach
    Posted October 27, 2011 at 5:47 pm | Permalink

    I loved the only player listed as being from PIkeville on thei roster who was namedHOBO McCOY

  3. c d kaplan
    Posted October 27, 2011 at 5:57 pm | Permalink

    Good call. Have to admit that passed me by. 

  4. cbcard
    Posted October 28, 2011 at 11:45 pm | Permalink

    Shame they didn’t also have a Hatfield.

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