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Monday, December 4, 2017


Cards Earn Come From Behind Victory at SDSU

For the second time in eight games, Louisville has had to handle business in an extremely hostile, tough road environment. The Cards passed the test with flying colors when they dispatched then No. 2 Ohio State, but appeared to have their hands full early in yesterday's game against the Jackrabbits (great nickname alert) of South Dakota State. Perhaps they felt the relief of the men's team getting into action in with a rough start of their own from 900 miles away, as the second half turned in favor of the Cardinals. Or perhaps it was the turnaround of Asia Durr after halftime that pulled the Cards up by their bootstraps to get to victory. Given that this team has shown that it generally goes the way Durr goes, I'm going to go with the latter.

Full disclosure from here on out: like most, I was unable to watch this game. However, I was also unable to listen live to the radio broadcast. My statements and analysis come only from the stats sheet, play-by-play, and what I could glean from Twitter during the game. The women's basketball account and Paulie both do a great job of tweeting updates, mostly filling in the holes left by one another. Now that we know that, let's move on to talk about some goings on.

The first quarter was rough. Louisville made only one of their first five shots and committed two fouls before finding themselves down 6-2 in the first two minutes. Over the next four minutes, Louisville was able to go tit for tat and stay close, trailing only 13-10 with 4:05 remaining in the first quarter. Then it got a bit ugly. Over the remainder of the quarter, SDSU went on an 11-2 run to stretch their lead to 24-12. I don't have the official statistic, but that sounds like the largest deficit for the Cards so far this season. Louisville owned the early part of the second quarter, going on a 9-0 run to close the gap to only 3. The defense loosened its grip a bit for the remainder of the half, unfortunately, and the Jackrabbits extended their lead to 31-23 by halftime. 

The good thing for Louisville was that, at halftime, someone found the real Asia Durr hidden in her locker by some impostor. Durr was 1-6 from the floor in the first half. She was 0-2 from beyond the arc and had 1 rebound, 1 foul, 3 assists, and a turnover in 14 minutes. In the second half, the play went through Durr. She shot 6-14, still not a great percentage, but much better. She went 3-5 from beyond the arc and added 2 rebounds, 2 assists, and a steal with just one turnover. Durr played every minute of the second half. 

The Cards came storming out of the gates after halftime, led by Asia Durr. Durr scored 12 of the first 19 points of the half, leading Louisville on a 14-5 run over 5:40 to take their first lead of the game at 37-36. SDSU quickly regained that lead and stretched it back to 4 before Louisville could recover. The two teams then traded baskets through the end of the quarter to go into the final stanza tied at 46. Louisville scored the first point of the fourth quarter just nine seconds in with an Asia Durr free throw. Louisville would not yield the lead for the remainder of the game, despite consistent pressure from South Dakota State and held on to win 68-64. 

Durr was joined in double figures by Arica Carter with 14 and Myisha Hines-Allen with 10. Bionca Dunham led the team with 7 rebounds. The Cards were plagued by foul trouble with Hines-Allen and Dana Evans having four apiece and Sam Fuehring was entirely uneffective on the day, fouling out with 4 points, 3 rebounds, and 2 turnovers in only 17 minutes. Looking at the stats of several key players would not inspire confidence in a Louisville win, but the Cards got it done.

South Dakota State is a mid-major, this is true, but that should not discredit the difficulty of this true road win for UofL. SDSU was ranked number two in the mid-major rankings this past week, receiving 2 first place votes. They defeated then No. 23 NC State over Thanksgiving, and were previously undefeated at home. The crowd was undoubtedly excited for the chance to defeat a top 5 opponent. For Louisville to go into a hostile true road environment and come out with a tough win, especially in the manner in which they did so, is impressive. The Cards are back in action in the safety of the Yum! Center on Tuesday when UT Martin comes to town. Tipoff is set for 7PM and the game will be on the ACC Network Extra.

The C-A-S-E Report

Let's take a look at how the Cards did in some major statistical categories. As a reminder for how this works: Louisville's performance is measured against the opponent (but mostly themselves) in turnovers, assists, steals, and shooting efficiency. 

Vikings 'Interim' Starting QB Case Keenum
C-Care: Louisville turned the ball over 14 times. Off the bat, that doesn't look like a great number. Upon further analysis, it isn't. Louisville only forced one more turnover, with SDSU committing 15. SDSU also forces an average of 15.71 turnovers per game this season. That mean's Louisville committed 89.1% of the average. That's not good enough, as we desire Louisville to play crisp, clean, and better than the opponent. Fewer turnovers is worth half a letter, though, so that's a lowercase 'c'.

A-Assists: The Cards finished with 14 assists. As we just learned, they also had 14 turnovers. That's an assist to turnover ratio of 1. That's not good. Louisville did assist on exactly 50% of their shots, though, so they'll also be awarded a lowercase 'a'.

S-Steals: Louisville finished with 10 steals and South Dakota State finished with 7. I'm going to push the benchmark to 7.5 (to prevent pushes), but Louisville still achieved both goals. That's an uppercase 'S'. 

E-Efficiency: The Cards shot only 35.5% in the first half, but followed it up with a blistering 58.6% in the second. That gave them a final line of 46.7%, just over the 45% benchmark. They weren't so good from the charity stripe, shooting just 7-12. That 58.3% is well below the 75% goal. They'll earn a lowercase 'e'. 

Louisville finishes up with a c-a-S-e in the CASE Report. I've noticed that Louisville generally does much better in the CASE Report than they do in Paulie's FRED reports. What do you think, comment section? Does the CASE Report need to be tougher? Let me know!

Until next time, Go Cards!


  1. I am proud of the way the basketball team came back for a tough win against an excellent opponent.

    At the same time. I am embarrassed that the game could not be seen or listened to it without going through a pay service provided through South Dakota State. Imagine that happening to a top five men basketball team. It is pure sexism and a same for all who do nothing about it. If nothing else contact the powers to be and complain. This is one of the reasons that I no longer subscribe to the Courier Journal.

    1. You're entitled to your opinion but the reality is that it has nothing to do with sexism and saying it does just encourages the false narrative that floats around WCBB.

      If any significant viewer population wanted to watch this game it would have been easily available via web, network or cable. The fact is that nothing in the past has indicated that many folks want to watch a game like this and if they were the exception they had the option of paying for it.

      People familiar with WCBB understood that SDSU has a great team and it would be a good game which is fine but few folks in the general population even know where SDSU is and certainly don't know that they're they're a top rated mid-major.

      iI's a good win against a strong mid-major in their house. We came back and won. That's enough for me. Please do everyone a favor and don't play the gender's come up a few times in the past week and frankly it's a red herring. There are tons of guys supporting WCBB and to set great WBB clubs & players up as the victims isn't helpful.

  2. It is sad but a lot of times the mid-majors will do the pay-per-view to raise money for the program, although there is a way around it. I have started contacting S.I.D.'s for women's basketball opponents whose schools do the pay-per-view thing and requesting a password to get in free. All but one over the past two years have granted it.

    The concept is archaic though and especially for a school like SD State who has a hugh fan base but no conference support platform for covering events like this. The announcers were most definitely "homers" and I had to turn them down most of the game and listen to our radio feed here and the delay that exists with that and the action.

    I cannot stress it enough. WE have two of the best in the business in Nick and A.J. We probably won't have Nick long...he's too good and a network will come calling. Or the Reds, who recently let Jim Kelch go.


    1. The Bird Lady12/04/2017 11:42 AM

      Agreed. It has been especially cool to watch Nick's growth and development. He is very good and AJ is always the consummate professional. We are very lucky to have the best support staff around

    2. Good points all. The enigma of women's college basketball is that it does not get the attention, nor the coverage of the men's game. I find it more exciting than the -- dunk and three -- theory going on in men's college hoops. Many argue that with me. I like what I like, though.

      I go to watch USF Bulls WBB games because I do love the women's game so. So does Robin, my wife. I am a Cardinal fan, don't misinterpret this, but Jose Fernandez is an entertaining coach and I get to see good basketball as a rule. They are 4-1 and #17 in the nation, the only loss coming to Notre Dame by 10 in South Bend. Sadly, I could not make that trip. USF has Oklahoma Saturday there in Norman. I hope to be able to view it, but if not, the Bulls radio crew does a fairly passable job.

      While I'm at it, congratulations to Louisville football. Jacksonville isn't too bad a drive from Bradenton and I'll probably go. Are you going Paulie, if so, we must make plans to tailgate together! I'll bring Robin and maybe our youngest Nikki, if she isn't busy. She does stay busy.

      Get ready for cowbells, Cardinal fans.

      USF football goes to the Birmingham Bowl for the second year in a row. This time they face 6-6 Texas Tech on Dec 23rd. I'll pass on that. I'm not that big a Charlie Strong fan, although he did manage a 9-2 record and almost won one of the most exciting playoff games I can remember in recent history against UCF. I didn't go to that either.

      So, I am equally happy following college sports via radio or TV or Internet, in summation.

      David Watson

  3. Great road win Go Cards, Hallelujah....!the cards are back on the ACC NET WORK.

  4. A big shout out to AC 14pts.and playing good Def.

  5. A close one but good teams find a way to win on the road and this Louisville squad is a good one. Even when they are not at their best, they still pull the game out. These next four for the Cards should be romps in the KFC YUM!Center and, hopefully, we'll see Loretta Kakala and Jess Laemmle getting a decent amount of playing time.

    Seeing how the Cards did with limited playing time from Hines-Allen indicates to me that Dunham, Shook and Fuehring still need to step their games up more.

    I'm sure the Coaches are reviewing the game film and creating teaching points for review with the squad. I expect a huge blowout of UT-Martin and sizeable wins over Vandy, MTSU and Tenn. State.

    Nice article today, Case. Keep them coming !

    -- The Real Joe Hill --

    1. Thanks, Joe! I'll keep writing as long as Paulie keeps letting me!


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