Petrino making most of Louisville’s short week

No Monday press conference for Bobby Petrino, not with less than four days to prepare for the game at Syracuse on Friday.

Not a lot of time to work on the deficiencies but Petrino is fixated on eliminating some suicidal tendencies on the offensive side of the ball. “We have a tough schedule at the end of the season so it’s important we improve, and execute without hurting ourselves,” he said Saturday. “The first thing you have to do win a game is not beat ourselves. We’ve got to get rid of the turnovers, take care of the football, and get better technically. I like the way we ran the ball late in the game but we have lot more than one thing to do. That’s the problem.”Bobby-Petrino-1-8-14

The last thing any University of Louisville fan expected from a Bobby Petrino-coached team was one struggling on offense but who could have anticipated DeVante Parker or Michael Dyer getting injured, a major drop off in efficiency at quarterback, or the lack of effectiveness from a veteran offensive line?  Coupled with a new coaching staff and a different offensive philosophy, there was much to absorb for a unit that was largely content with consuming the clock last season.

Petrino appears to have been gifted with an extraordinary defense that has given up only 14 points per game. Of the 70 points yielded thus far, 66 of them have been the result of turnovers. Extraordinary really, considering the Cardinals lost nine starters on defense. But then this is the “light” part of the schedule, with the toughest tests yet to come.

Whether the defense is strong enough to keep Louisville in games while the offense continues at sputter remains to be seen. But we do know that Petrino is aware of what needs to be done and will make the best of the short week.Give him four days, and he will make the most of them. It’s becoming more and more obvious that living up to own expectations is a long-term effort.

Expect another grinder at Syracuse for now.

*     *     *

The ACC has announced that the Louisville-Clemson game will be at 3:30 p.m. for Saturday, Oct. 11. The game will be televised on either ABC, ESPN or ESPNU, with a final decision coming after the outcome of games this weekend. In other words, UofL needs to win at Syracuse and Clemson has to win at North Carolina for the telecast not to be relegated to ESPNU.

*     *     *

Nora Kiesler, a 6-foot-6 center from Louisville’s Assumption High, has verballed to play her college women’s basketball at Purdue, starting in 2015. Her name was mentioned in connection with UofL recruiting but not often. She was also scheduled to visit Kansas and Michigan State.

Author: Charlie Springer

Charlie Springer is a former Louisville editor and sportswriter, as well as a public affairs consultant, a UofL grad and longtime fan.