Florida prospect a soft commit to Louisville

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Florida kids have a tough time saying no to Charlie Strong.

Travonte Valentine, a defensive tackle from Palm Bay, has selected Louisville over offers from Miami, Florida, Indiana, South Florida, Michigan State, Minnesota and West Virginia.

The 6-foot-3, 285-pounder told Scout.com that he would visit U of L this summer.

He told Rivals.com, however, “I am still going to look at more schools. I am just verbally committing, I am not solidly committing yet just because there is still so much time left.”

May have to redefine the word commitment.

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Big 12 members come to assistance of West Virginia

This could only happen in the never-ending conference realignment saga.

Money wasn’t supposed to be an object for West Virginia University when it came to getting into another conference. But when push came to shove, WVU apparently needed help, a lot of help. Needed millions in financial assistance.

No word as to whether it’s a loan. If so, we’re sure they’re good for it, being a big-time football program and all.

WVU and the Big East Conference have reportedly reached a settlement allowing the Mountaineers to join the Big 12 this year for a hefty $20 million price tag. However, WVU is only ponying up $11 million.

The Mountaineers apparently coming up a little “short,” counting on the good will of the Big East and the deep pockets of their new conference brethren. Each Big 12 school will ante up $1 million on behalf of WVU to seal the deal.

Really.

Not a way to begin a marriage, the new member of the family having already leaned on everybody in the conference for money.

We’re sure WVU will lean over backwards to be extra nice to fans of Big 12 teams visiting Morgantown. Yeah, one can count on that.

Happy days here again for Louisville football

Games in Morgantown aren’t for the weak of heart.

West Virginia football tradition goes way back, as does the rabid fan support. One has to have respect for the program and be wary of the locals. If you second guess yourself, show fear, or allow yourself to be intimidated, they’ll run roughshod over you, laughing at you, mocking your fans on your way out of town.

The University of Louisville football team hadn’t won a game there since becoming a member of the Big East Conference in 2005. The odds of winning a game with a rebuilding program, a team overloaded with sophomores and freshmen and a team lacking much offensive prowess were very long. Especially against a team boasting one of college football’s most prolific offenses.

But if you play for Charlie Strong, you know life in the loser’s lane is far worse than anything that West Virginia can throw at you. Besides, he has taught what to expect, has prepared you for it, has confidence in you, and expects you to win. Continuous improvement is more than a theme on a locker room banner, it’s an early earmark of the Strong era.

Louisville  defeated a top 25 team, won a third consecutive game for the first time since the Bobby Petrino era, got back on the winning side of the won-lost record, gained some recognition for the hard work, and restored a good measure of respect for UofL football.

The fact that all this occurred in Morgantown made the win all that much sweeter.

Cheerleaders may be going to West Virginia after all

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The word is slowly filtering through local cyberspace that the University of Louisville cheerleaders will, indeed, be going to the UofL-West Virginia football game. No official announcement that we’ve seen or heard yet, apparently just a tweet from a West Virginia source who reportedly was in touch with UofL officials.

The report was widely circulated in Louisville media circles, including here on Card Game. No word on the other part of the initial report that included the dance team. Dancers don’t usually perform at away games anyway, do they? Tune in Saturday to see who actually made the trip.
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