Louisville Card File: South Florida

Another Louisville Cardinal victory, a come from behind job over a team on a four game losing streak.

That would be Lucky 7 without a loss.

Another head scratching Sunday morning, wondering how good this U of L team really is?

The offensive and defensive units each came up HUGE when absolutely necessary for victory. But the harrowing 2 point, saved on the final play interception win came over disappointing USF. Skip Holtz’s Bulls have now gone down five times in a row.

Sooooooooooooooooo . . . what are we to glean from yesterday’s success?

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Offensive Yang: Having surrendered the lead with 3:26 to play, magnificent Teddy B led the Cards inexorably down the field for the winning score on a stupendous 11 yard TD toss and scintillating catch by HS pal Eli Rogers.

Eight plays. 75 yards. 1:34. Serious fun for the Cardinal Nation.

Offensive Yin: Louisville’s offensive line, battered and makeshift, never gained control of the running game. Senorise Perry and Jeremy Wright were held to 60 rushing yards in 22 carries. Bridgewater rambled for 74 on the ground, but most were scrambles.

Defensive Yang. GOAL LINE STAND. U of L kept the Bulls out of the endzone in the 3d. Three attempts from the 1 foot line. No TD. Adrian Bushell intercepted Daniels’ Hail Mary on the final play to preserve the W.

Defensive Yin. Bulls scatback Lindsey Lamar jitterbugged his way for 74 yards . . . in the 3d quarter. He ran for 110 yards for the game.

Special Teams Yin. Ryan Johnson averaged 31 1/2 yards on four punts. Josh Appleby and John Wallace still can’t get the ball in the endzone on kickoffs. Opponents have consistently started drives with good field position. Wallace missed that last extra point, leaving the door open for USF.

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Individual Defensive Yang. Preston Brown had 17 tackles. Lorenzo Mauldin had 6 tackles, three for lost yardage, recovered a fumble and registered two of Louisville’s four sacks. Jermaine Reve had 6 tackles, three for lost yardage and a sack. Plus he delivered U of L’s biggest lick of the season, for which he received a 15 year personal foul penalty. (One guy’s opinion: His helmet did hit the receiver’s, making it a legit call.)

Individual Offensive Yang. Teddy Bridgewater was 21/25 in the air for 256 yards, two TDs and no picks. He scrambled for 74 yards on the ground. He was cooler than Duke Ellington as he led the team down the field for the winning tally.

At the post-game dinner last night (Impellizzeri’s Downtown), the question was posed. “Is Bridgewater the best QB ever to play at U of L?” Caveat: None of the assembled ever saw Johnny U under center for the Cards. Two votes clearly: Yes. Teddy B is the best. One 1/2 vote for Bridgewater, and 1/2 vote for Stefan LeFors. We advised David he obviously was tired and needed to get some rest.

Eli Rogers had his best game as a Cardinal.

Individual Offensive Yin. The O Line simply could not open holes to establish a running game. I’m not going to name the individual names. They also allowed a blocked extra point.

Individual Defensive Yin. Apparently Stephan Robinson impressed his coaches enough in practice to garner significant playing time at CB over Terrell Floyd and Andrew Johnson. He was scored over twice on identical endzone throws, even though he was reasonably well positioned. Note: He was not on the field during USF’s final drive.

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On South Florida’s second to last scoring drive, it had a 4th and 3 at the U of L 39. The Bulls got a delay of game call, making it 4th and 8. At which point I turned to my fellow scribes and opined, “That’s how a team loses four in a row.” Heads were nodded in agreement. Daniels, of course, converted, and the Bulls eventually scored on the drive. Silly me.

They tallied with 8:02 to play to pull within five of the Cards. After the TD, Skip “I’m Not Nearly As Good A Coach As My Father” Holtz went for a one point conversion. At which point, I repeated, “That’s how a team loses four in a row.” Saved by a Louisville penalty, the Bulls converted a two-pointer to pull them within a field goal.

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Plus-sized USF nose guard “Pork Chop” Grissom made only two tackles. Which I mention simply because I wanted to type “Pork Chop” Grissom.

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The student section was far from full.

Too much Homecoming celebration, I wonder? Suffering maladies from mold in the dorms?

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Just when the Big East, still losing the PR game, could use a truly marquee matchup, Cincinnati ups and loses to Toledo.

Big Ten schools can lose to MAC schools without taking a hit to the prestige of the league. Big East schools cannot.

If the Bearcats showed up at Papa J’s next Friday with an unblemished record, it would have been a good thing. Now, Louisville’s up river rival will be even more hungry and embarrassed.

– Seedy K

2 Comments

  1. cbcard
    Posted October 21, 2012 at 11:39 pm | Permalink

    The blocked PAT wasn’t the fault of the line nearly as much as it was the fault of Wallace, the kicker. He was low line driving his PATs all night and we were really lucky none of the first three were blocked. Yet another special teams SNAFU (I figure that acronym will allow me to use the verb that most people scream when our special teams make another goof).

  2. Birdie King
    Posted October 25, 2012 at 3:13 pm | Permalink

    Special teams have almost caused three losses this year. We overcame them, but for how long?

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