Louisville football gets offensive line commitment

Geron Christian
Geron Christian

Keeping it in the family.

Wide Receiver Gerald Christian will play his final game with the University of Louisville football in the Belk Bowl but his kinfolk will continue to maintain a strong rooting interest in the Cardinals after the bowl game.

Gerald’s younger brother, Geron, a 6-foot-4, 305-pound offensive lineman has made a verbal commitment to play at UofL as a member of the incoming 2015 class. He played his high school football at Ocala (Fla.) Trinity Catholic, which had an 11-3 won-lost record this season.

Geron had previously committed to play at the University of Miami. He also received interest from numerous schools, including Arkansas, Mississippi State, Central Florida and East Carolina.

Filling gaps on the offensive line is critical for the University of Louisville football staff, with three of five starters graduating this year.

Christian is the 21st commitment in this recruiting class. The signing period begins Feb. 4.

ACC initiation ceremony beckons Louisville football against Miami


Welcome to the Atlantic Coast Conference. For real.

A new era begins Monday night for University of Louisville athletics, the first conference game ever in the ACC for any University of Louisville team in any sport. Appropriate that it would be in football because it was the sport that drove conference realignment, unprecedented changes in the college landscape making it possible for UofL to be on the main stage.

Lots of celebrating and self-congratulating over the past summer and the last year or so, punctuated by the demolition of massive silos, an impressive expansion of student housing, academic facilities and an ever-changing campus landscape. Louisville belongs, a member of the big boy club, welcomed with open arms by the respected members of the prestigious ACC.

'The aggressive approach has always worked well for Petrino in football, just as it turned out spendidly for Tom Jurich in the larger chess game of conference realignment.'

Now it’s time to get down to business.

While UofL’s first game against Miami is accompanied by the enthusiasm of the return of Coach Bobby Petrino and his aggressive offensive philosophy, there is lots of uncertainty to go around. A complete turnover in the coaching staff brings with it a learning curve, new plays, new ways of doing things, new offensive and defensive alignments, new officiating crews — items that often require periods of adjustment.

Then, of course, there’s the absence of DeVante Parker, the team’s leading receiver, and questions surrounding the availability of Michael Dyer, who was expected to back at full force until he suffered an severe bruised thigh. Some untested newcomers on the offensive and defensive lines.

Lot of questions from fans, serious challenges for the coaches, the kind of stuff Petrino relishes, why he thrives on being a football coach. Petrino has indicated that he liked what he inherited and has alleviated some of the shortcomings. If he’s optimistic, who’s to question him?

At 8 p.m. on Labor Day, the captains of the Cardinals and the Hurricanes will meet with the officials on the 50-yard line for the coin toss. The only thing for sure is that Louisville will get the ball first. If UofL wins the coin toss, it will choose to receive. If Miami wins, it will defer until the second half, not wanting to test its freshman quarterback too early, going on defense. Bobby Petrino always wants the ball first.

The aggressive approach has always worked well for Petrino in football, just as it turned out spendidly for Tom Jurich in the larger chess game of conference realignment. The challenges are huge, dwarfing some of those from the past with UofL overcoming seemingly insurmountable obstacles time after time to get to where it is today.

Welcome to the ACC where anything is possible.

Doubleheader gut check in football and basketball

Two major conflicts, one right on top of the other, five or six hours of emotional highs and lows for University of Louisville fans Saturday. The pressured-packed, non-stop intensity certain to severely test the cardio, cerebral and central nervous systems of many a Cardinal fan.

The first in basketball against the University of Kentucky. The second, in football, a bowl game against the University of Miami, forcing fans to quickly adapt between sports and changing venues with little time to absorb or savor the results from the first encounter to the second.

UK fans are seemingly omnipresent, impossible to avoid, and are never going to go away.

Obviously, UK is not just another basketball foe. The school’s administrators, coaches and fans proclaim the program to be the premier basketball program in the nation, backing up the claim with eight national championships. A program with a coach who is able to recruit first-round NBA draft picks on an annual basis and arrogantly boasts that “UK is college basketball.” A program that wouldn’t even schedule UofL for 40 years and finally did so only under considerable pressure from the State Legislature.

The rivalry extends from the basketball court to all other sports and even into the daily lives of Louisvillians who live and work alongside UK fans. They are as strong in their allegiance to the Wildcats as UofL die-hards are in their collective loyalty to the Cardinals. Never mind that Wildcat fans account for only 36% of the local population, they are seemingly omnipresent, impossible to avoid, and are never going to go away.

Continue reading “Doubleheader gut check in football and basketball”

How much did Nevin Shapiro really hate Miami?

Nevin Shapiro went from being Miami’s biggest fan to one of the school’s biggest haters after a Ponzi scheme blew up in his face.

Calls to former UM football players for financial assistance went unanswered. He was ignored, damaged goods, hadn’t done anything for them lately. He was angry, bitter and vengeful.

The question is what else was he doing before being locked up to get back at the U besides writing his memoirs and telling all to Yahoo Sports. The answer could be the nightmare scenario.