Most football coaches will hedge their bets when discussing their teams but Bobby Petrino obviously likes his University of Louisville team two weeks prior to the opening game against Auburn. He especially loves his defensive line, which is providing him with what he needs to know about who will be calling signals in the first game.
A man who not only knows football inside and out but who has the ability to inform and educate during press conferences, a rare commodity in football coaches. He spoke to the local sport media Friday before the 2015 Kickoff Luncheon.
Another wish has come true during Tom Jurich’s tenure as vice president of athletics at the University of Louisville with Friday’s announcement that UofL and Indiana University have completed scheduling arrangement to compete in both basketball and football.
Three-game series in each sport, with games to be played at Indianapolis, in Louisville and at Bloomington.
In basketball, the teams will tip-off in their first game at Bankers Life Arena in Indianapolis on Dec. 31, 2016, followed by games at the KFC Yum! Center on Dec. 2017 and at Assembly Hall in Bloomington on Sept. 2018.
“I’ve felt for a long time that these series were a natural for fans from both universities and I’m thrilled to see it come to fruition,” said Jurich. “We have played each other in most sports and it has been a very friendly rivalry. There are a lot of fans in Southern Indiana that support both schools who I know will particularly enjoy the competition.”
In football, the series will kick off on Sept. 23, 2023 at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, at Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium on Sept. 7, 2024, and at Memorial Stadium in Bloomington on Dec. 8, 2025.
A pity that the football series is so far into the future, especially for some long time followers of UofL football, including this observer. At least we have the satisfaction of knowing that it’s going to happen. If we’re still around, don’t crowd us while we’re navigating those stadium steps.
Jurich has worked on this for so long that it had to be a monumental challenge. Not that IU will ever be a great football power, but it’s a series that needed to happen. Tom embraces the big challenges and, sooner or later, they become a reality. With everything he has accomplished at UofL, one wonders what’s left for him to work on. He’s paved the road for his coaches to follow through on the playing fields.
A new gateway welcoming students and visitors to the University of Louisville has been completed just in time for the 2015-16 academic year. Located on the west side of Floyd Street at Warnock Street, the entrance features the Cardinal logo in a bricked area in front. Columns with the Cardinal logo are also prominent, adding an uplifting new look to the street. The entry provides greatly enhanced access to the east side of the campus, including the new flyover ramps to the future Belknap Engineering & Applied Sciences Research Park, easier access to Speed School and a brand new view of Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium. (Click on photos for larger view.)
The contenders for starting quarterback of the University of Louisville football team have been thinned by one.
Tyler Ferguson, a 6-foot-4, 217-pound junior, is transferring to another yet-to-be-named school, having fallen deep in the potential starting rotation. He apparently sensed his future wasn’t at UofL, having fallen behind Reggie Bonnafon, Will Gardner, Kyle Bolin and even freshman Lamar Jackson during fall camp.
Ferguson’s college career has been a nomadic existence, with the latest transfer his third in four years.
He began in 2012 at College of the Sequoias, a California community college where he threw for 2,614 yards and 22 touchdowns. The following season, he initially committed to Houston before changing his mind and going to Penn State, where he played in five games, completing 10 of 15 pass attempts for 155 yards and a touchdown.
Ferguson will have to sit out another season if he transfers to another FBS school but he would play immediately if he drops a level to an FCS school.
Tough road, the transfer trail. Hopefully he finally finds some playing time at his next stop.
Nothing like college football on a Saturday afternoon in the fall.
Which UofL fan will ever forget the inaugural game at Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium on Sept. 5, 1998? The day Cardinal fans had been dreaming of for decades, having their own football stadium. Largely funded by business and fan donations, the new stadium sent a message that Louisville was committed to competing at the highest level.
Temperatures on the field were at least 105 degrees, and John L. Smith was making his debut at UofL, getting introduced to the UofL-UK rivalry. Kentucky would take full advantage of UofL that day 68-34, still looking for more points when the horn sounded. PJCS ran out of bottled water that day and dozens of fans treated for heat stroke. A miserable day for football.
With what some weather forecasters are describing as a “Godzilla El Nino” heating up out west, the upcoming fall season could be a wet one. UofL fans have been through many rough weather games and have learned how to prepare for them. UofL football actually has a good track record for rain games. Here are my top five rain games:
Sept. 26, 2002 –Florida State was in town, undefeated after four games and ranked fourth in the country. Accompanying the Seminoles were remnants of tropical storm Isidore and a wind-driven drizzle that never subsided. The crowd of 38,109 hung around until the end, rewarded by the unforgettable sight of Henry Miller spurting 25 yards for the game-winning touchdown on the second play in overtime for a 26-20 win. An equally vivid memory was the fans in a kaleidoscope of rain ponchos converging on the field, and the goal posts taking a victory lap around the field.
Sept. 2, 2000 — A memorable duel between quarterbacks Dave Ragone and Jared Lorenzen. UK held a 19-14 lead in the third quarter when a violent lightning storm erupted, sending fans at PJCS scrambling over seats and into the aisles for protection. The delay would last for an hour and twelve minutes. UofL would block a dead certain UK game winning field goal on the final play in regulation. Tony Stallings would rush 25 yards on the second play in overtime to give UofL a 40-34 win.
Nov. 27, 2004 — The downpour began shortly after Eric Shelton took a handoff from Stefan Lefors on the first play of the game and scampered 80 yards for a touchdown. The bitter-cold rain was constant as UofL continued to pile on the points en route to 70-7 rout of the Cincinnati Bearcats. Adding fuel to UofL’s fire that day was the fact that the Cincinnati players had jumped on the UofL logo at midfield prior to the game. One the rare games where this observer left before the end of the game (grandson in hand).
Sept. 29, 2012 — This game between UofL and Southern Mississippi was scary before so much water accumulated in various parts of the field, the rain continuing to fall throughout the game. The Hattiesburg field was waterlogged, with at least three inches of waters in some spots. UofL was 4-0 coming into the game, Southern Miss was 0-3, and the intensity was high, equalling earlier games in the rivalry. Teddy Bridgewater came into the game averaging 262.2 yards passing, but was held to 9-of-13 passing for 85 yards. Senorise Perry would score from 14 yards out with eight minutes to go, giving UofL a 21-17 win.
Dec. 28, 1993 — Not a fall game but Jeff Brohm was quarterbacking Louisville against Michigan State in the Liberty Bowl, with Howard Schnellenberger on the sidelines. Temperatures in the mid-20’s, with rain mixing with sleet. Thank goodness for battery-powered heated seat pads in that one. UofL trailed 7-3 going into the fourth quarter, emerging with a 18-7 win after Brohm’s 25-yard touchdown pass to Reggie Ferguson and a 14-yard touchdown run by Ralph Dawkins.
Nice rainy day memories, especially with UofL coming out on top.