Louisville football fans shoulder to shoulder at signing party

.

If one made the mistake of going to the concession area, one was likely find his seat occupied upon return.

The University of Louisville is going to have to find another location for the annual football signing party based on the turnout for Wednesday’s celebration. Standing room only at the Brown & Williamson Club. An estimated 1,200 fans on hand, shoulder to shoulder they were there to celebrate.

Bobby Petrino
Bobby Petrino

The level of support just keeps growing, impressing Coach Bobby Petrino. “This is quite a turnout, he said, adding that it reminded him of UofL’s attendance at the Music City Bowl in Nashville. “That was like another home game for us,” he said.

As he spoke, the thoughts of at least one long-time fan flashed back to one of Vince Gibson’s signing events at the old football complex at Fairgrounds Stadium. Between 75 and 100 people would show up, everybody knew everybody, busying themselves with small talk, munching on cheese and cold cuts, just happy to be there, but dreaming of better days for UofL football.

A few of those fans were probably at Wednesday’s event but they wouldn’t been able to find each other. But they are happy people, continuing to marvel about how far the program has come.

Petrino said during an earlier press conference that the passion of UofL fans is important to recruiting success. “The best thing we have going for us is to get recruits on campus and get them to the city of Louisville,” he said. “Last weekend we had a great weekend with many of the recruits in town. It certainly solidified us with some of the guys who had opportunities to go to other schools.”

The recruits in Louisville over the weekend also attended the UofL-Virginia basketball game, which was a white-out event, attended by 21,714 fans. They entered in front of the student section, where many students were holding up signs personally welcoming the recruits by name. “It was a great experience for the recruits,” he said.

After the recruiting party, Petrino said he and the assistant coaches would be meeting with a boosters’ group that is assisting with another expansion of Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium. “Today is just a great day,” he said.

Shoulder to shoulder at the B&W Club for the signing party.
Shoulder to shoulder at the B&W Club for the signing party.

*  *  *

From UofL: The University of Louisville Athletics Department will conduct a press conference on Thursday, February 4 at 11 a.m. in the recruiting lounge of the Howard Schnellenberger Football Complex. Vice-President/Director of Athletics Tom Jurich and Senior Associate AD Mark Jurich will provide an update on the expansion of Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium and the football complex.

Come back, Nanu

Chinanu Onuaku back in the middle, factor or non-factor?

Chinanu Onuaku
Chinanu Onuaku

Thrust from a stomach disorder into the helter skelter against Virginia over the weekend.  Doesn’t go well.

Zero points. Zero rebounds. Did manage three fouls in 19 minutes.

What’s it’s going to be against North Carolina?

The reborn player with a brand new future who had six straight double-double games? Or the throwback 6-foot-10, 235-pound wanna be who get pushed around like a rag doll?

Future is now.

Louisville women’s basketball win streak at 14

Not taking any team for granted, not this University of Louisville women’s basketball team.

UofL defeating Wake Forest 78-54 Sunday before a crowd of 9,673 at the KFC Yum! Center. Fourteenth win in a row, improving to 17-5 overall and 8-0 in the Atlantic Coast Conference.

Asia Durr collected 13 of her 18 points in the second half.
Asia Durr collected 13 of her 18 points in the second half.

Wake Forest making the game physical early, hanging around trading baskets with UofL, trailing by only six points at the half.

Jeff Walz wanting his best shooters to take more shots, quit being so unselfish, needing them to take control. Urging them to shoot in the second half. And they would, with Mariya Moore leading all scorers with 26 points. Asia Durr would score 13 of her 18 points in the second half.

Myisha Hines-Allen and Briahanna Jackson added 10 points apiece for the game.

Next up is the University of North Carolina on Thursday at Chapel Hill, followed by a home game against highly-ranked Notre Dame at 2 p.m. on Super Bowl Sunday.

Louisville fails litmus test against Virginia

Nothing was gong right for the University of Louisville basketball team. Virginia had jumped out to a 29-14 lead at half time.

Damian Lee, Trey Lewis, Chinanu Onuaku, Donovan Mitchell, Anas Mahmoud and Jaylen Johnson had been held scoreless. Not even close to making a basket.

Quentin Snider had scored UofL’s first five points, one of them a 3-pointer, but except for four free throws, he was done for the day.

No chance. Virginia an easy 63-47 winner in a game that was nowhere near as close as the final score.

Quentin Snider takes on four Virginia defenders to no avail.
Quentin Snider takes on four Virginia defenders to no avail.

Louisville would somehow manage to score 33 points in the second half but never seriously threaten. Embarrassed and rendered helpless in front of a crowd of 21,714 fans on a White Out Day.

Ray Spalding and Deng Adel would lead UofL in scoring with 12 points piece, Spaulding cleaning up miscues around the rim and Adel a couple of three’s after the game had been decided.

Poor Rick Pitino had nowhere to hide in his latest white suit, failing to motivate his team, no danger of a comeback, never a hint of a rally. True to form, totally predictable, the coach would complain about his team’s lack of intensity on defense.

What was missing on Saturday, however, was any semblance of an offense. Largely because Virginia was beating Louisville at its own game, providing serious challenges to every shot attempted by UofL players.

Lee and Lewis looking lost, taking completely out of the equation, managing only six and four points, respectively. Onuaku, who had been sick during the week, failed to get a rebound and scored only one point.

Pitino said he saw it coming because his team hadn’t been playing good defense in recent games.

One has to respect his opinion but Virginia wasn’t exactly a scoring machine. What was painfully obvious was that UofL had no answers on either offense or defense on Saturday.

Louisville baseball on TV, early and often

Remember how hard it used to be to get University of Louisville baseball games on the radio? Hit or miss on WXVW in Jeffersonville, especially after 6 p.m., and they didn’t provide an Internet hookup either. Those days are ancient history, we hope.

Keeping up with the Cardinals improved significantly last year when UofL hooked up with WLCL in Sellersburg on 93.9 The Ville.  An FM station, with a consistently strong signal reaching as far south as Elizabethtown. Making life more fun for UofL fans.

Dan McDonnell coming soon.
Dan McDonnell coming soon.

Life just better with an announcement that at least 32 of the games on UofL’s 2016 baseball schedule will be televised on the ESPN family of networks. That includes 22 games on ESPN3.com, an Internet connection that most of us have made the adjustment, thanks to devices like Apple TV. Roku and Kindle Fire.

The  first appearance is Feb. 26-28 for a three-game series at Ole Miss on ESPN’s SEC Network. On March 11-13, Louisville will host ACC foe Notre Dame with all three games slated for ESPN3. The first game of a series with Miami March 18-20 will be streamed by ESPN3, with the final two games on ESPNU.

Virginia, the reigning NCAA College World Series champion, invades Jim Patterson Stadium March 25 through March 27. The three-game series will be carried on ESPN3.

The 2016 college baseball season kicks off in Louisville on February 19th at 3 p.m. with a game against Southern Illinois-Edwardsville.

Less than four weeks now.