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Sunday, December 29, 2019

Back Home Again -- End of an era --SUNDAY CARDINAL COUPLE

WBB Returns from Walkabout

The Cards women are returning from from gallivanting around...let's call it the Southeastern US.  Of course that definition has to be stretched a bit to include the US Virgin Islands.

It's been over a month, since November 24th against Boise State, since Walz and his squad have convened with CardNation in the KFC Yum! Center.

The opponent for the homecoming is the Syracuse Orange.  One of two meetings that the Cards will have with Quentin Hillsman's team this season, with possibly more in the post-season.

"Q" has had to re-format and rebuild this squad in 2019-20, when it was discovered "do-it-all" Aussie
Tiana Mangakahia had cancer and would sit out the season. In 2018-19, the talented guard led Syracuse with 16.9 p.p.g, 287 assists and a 88.2% success rate from the free throw line.  Syracuse has struggled a bit, albeit against a very demanding schedule, with the reboot, going 6-5 so far. 
Kiara Lewis (5-8, Guard) is the big offensive producer for the Orange averaging about 17 points per game, with a committee of folks backing her up.  Gabrielle Cooper, Digna Strautmane, and Emily Engstler average between 10 and 9.5 points per game.  Engstler (6-1, Guard) is the leading rebounder, though Amaya Finklea-Guity (6-4, Center) does the most to give the Syracuse 2nd chances on offense on the board.

Expect those five to be the starting five for the 'Cuse, as they have been all season long for Hillsman.  Off the bench, look for Maeva Djaldi-Tabdi (6-2, Forward) to be the leading scorer averaging a little over eight per game.  Bench perimeter contributions could come from Taleah Washington (5-7, Guard), although she's only hit nine on 39 attempts, so she's not exactly winning the efficiency battle.

Lewis is the big threat overall, in addition to being a scoring threat, she can dish as well, with almost six assists per game.

What are the keys to the Cards game for a win?  Well, I watched a game last night, and first and foremost on my mind is to make free throws.  I tend to harp on free throws a lot because there's no blaming the opposing team's defense when you miss them.  As I joked with a twitter friend last night, "Their free throw defense was incredible."  Success or failure at the free throw line is totally on the player, and it's easy to practice them and get better even if it's just you in a gym alone.

Otherwise, contain Kiara Lewis and protect the ball.  For other advice, I would suggest taking a moment to appreciate the sartorial excellence that Hillsman nearly always brings to the floor, and then put him out of your mind.  The Cardinal-Couple-beloved Q is larger than life and grabs attention, but if you let him get into your head, you're not playing the game.  Combine his antics with his obvious expertise as a coach, and it's critical to stay in the game, follow the game plan, and shut out distractions.

Game tip is at 2pm at the KFC Yum! Center and it will be on ESPN2, with Pam Ward, and Debbie Antonelli on the call, I believe.  Today is superhero day at the game, so if you can make it out, I expect we'll see a bunch of adorable kids in some fantastic costumes.  Will we see a reprise of Lamont Russell as Spiderman?  Maybe.  Beth Burns as Captain Marvel?  Ok, probably not so likely on that one.

Cardinal Couple Radio Hour

In the hit musical Hamilton, George Washington sings a song to Alexander Hamilton about his intentions to retire from politics titled, "One Last Time".  That song feels a little apropos to the CCRH at WCHQ right now.  We were on the air one last time from WCHQ, and we reminisced about the show's tenure up to this point.  We remembered various contributors to the show over the years, some of the guests we had on the show, and the good times we've had broadcasting first from the basement on the hill, and later the magnificent media mansion on Mellwood.  We did also talk about sports, with women's basketball returning home to start ACC play, and overall Paulie and I enjoyed our last time at WCHQ.

  Check it out at:

The Cardinal Couple Radio Hour will broadcast from WCHQ no more.  The radio station will shut
down its operations Tuesday night, but the CCRH will live on, as we have been saying.  We have been working on several plans in parallel to bring a Youtube Live Streamed version of the CCRH in the future.  The biggest sticking point that we've (I've) run into recently is getting a hold of people to finalize getting access to facilities where we can get together to record/stream due to the holidays.  Our efforts will continue, though they may not come to fruition in time to have a show next week.  Stay tuned to these pages for developments.  In the meantime, you can connect with the Cardinal Couple Youtube channel, where streams will go live, at:

The channel is a bit bare bones at this point, with only a few videos of player and coach interviews that I got at the volleyball selection show.  This will be where we stream so you can subscribe, and consider hitting the bell button to be notified of new videos when they start posting.


We ended our time at WCHQ the way we started it. Me and Jeff. It was a long and beautiful run, but it is over. We move on optimistically to the next phase of broadcasting our voices and views.

Just a huge "thank you" here to all that were involved, participated, listened to or supported us on 100.9 FM. We have always said, "You are Cardinal Couple and we appreciate it." We will be back, probably with a name change, definitely at a new venue and will continue to do what we do, bring you the joy and excitement of UofL women's sports. 

To Jeff, Case and Jared : You're the "A" team and three of the best knuckleheads I've had the pleasure of knowing. We move on, boys, and remain strong and solid. 


I'm looking forward to getting 2020 started off on a good note, I hope you are, too.


1 comment:

  1. What a great and touching way to bring it to a close, Paulie and Jeff. You guys darn near had me close to tears a couple of times.

    I look forward to your next venue and applaud you for the past. AM Radio ain't got sh!# on y'all.

    Curtis "Recognizes quality and excellence" Franklin


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