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Sunday, December 29, 2013

Cardinals open first (and last) season of league play in the AAC today


SUNDAY CARDINAL COUPLE


The women’s basketball team opens conference play in the American Athletic Conference today at the KFC YUM Center with a 3:00 tip against Southern Methodist University (SMU).  The Cardinals are entering the game on a 5 game winning streak and a 12-1 overall record.   The Mustangs of SMU have a 9-2 overall record. 

Senior guard Keena Mays is coming off a huge game, scoring 32 points to lead the Mustangs in an overtime victory against North Texas.  Mays is also the leading scorer in the AAC averaging 20.9 points per game.  No doubt, the Cardinals scouting report will focus heavily on Mays.   Supporting Mays on the court in scoring is senior forward Akil Simpson who is averaging 14.1 ppg and is also the leading rebounder with 8.3 per game. 

The Mustangs lone elite matchup of the season they were crushed by Tennessee.  In that game Mays was held to just 12 points while Simpson 11.  The Mustangs lost to Tennessee by 40 points. 

Unfortunately for the Mustangs I do not see this game much differently.   The Cardinals should dominate from the tip.  One could likely expect Henderson, Niamke and Deines logging extended minutes in this one.   In my opinion, this is likely to be the kind of game where the Cardinals can really work on specific aspects of their individual game, as well as specific aspects of team play.  In recent games the Cardinals have been focusing specifically on passing in and out of the post and working hard to manage the ball and limit turnovers. 

The team is reconvening after a brief holiday that break that likely saw most of the team headed home for the Holidays.  They were to report back to campus on Thursday, December 26. 

The Cardinals will hit the road for a midweek matchup against the Temple Owls on New Years Day.  They will return back home next Saturday for a match against Cincinnati.    We hope to see you at The YUM Center!

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The men’s basketball team had a tall order in Lexington and fell just shy on the day losing by 7 to the Cats.  National Championships are not won, or lost, in December.  Bragging rights go to the Cats for a sweep of the men’s and women’s team this season.

The highlight of the day was the dominant performance of the football team pounding Miami, winning the Russell Athletic Bowl, handedly.  Cardinal fans now await the announcement of Teddy Bridgewater, will he stay or will he go?     While I would love for Teddy to usher the football program in the to ACC, with a degree under his belt (how impressive is that, by the way?), I expect we will see Teddy in the NFL Draft. 

Jenny O'Bryan

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EDITOR NOTE

Teddy Bridgewater may have put on the most spectacular performance by a UofL quarterback in a bowl game ever. Some would counter with Browning Nagel in the 1991 Fiesta Bowl...but "Teddy Bowlgame" shone on a night where the Miami defenders mirrored the cartoon characters a few miles away at Disney World. Goofy. Donald Duck. Mickey Mouse and Dumbo.

Teddy needs to go. Best to walk out in the white hot spotlight when you can. (See Brian Brohm and Steve Kragthorpe as a "not to do" example). Maybe Devante Parker goes, too. It does not matter. Coach Charlie will reload, rebuild and make the Cards competitive in the ACC. I wonder how the 'Canes would vote now about accepting Louisville into the league?

Good luck Teddy! As a friend remarked last night, "So, if Teddy goes...can we consider it 'water under the bridge'?".  Hmmm...more like a raging river headed to the vast seas, maybe.

paulie



Jenny O'Bryan

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