Andrell Smith going deep, getting bumped, bumped again, reaching out, juggling, snaring the football with the tips of his finger nails.

An unlikely catch by a receiver almost forgotten during a season of random receivers — his one reception in the game,  his ninth this season.

Had to have that one, the University of Louisville’s offense having shifted into neutral, badly needing some momentum, some glimmer of hope. Teddy Bridgewater would carry the football into the end zone two plays later, giving UofL a 21-10 cushion.

Bridgewater would scamper into the end zone again early in the fourth quarter, adding further padding to its lead.

No lead was safe, however, because UConn’s receivers were too wide open and they weren’t going to keep missing all day. UConn muffed 27 of them but still made enough receptions to keep fans on the edge of their seats.

Enough of those onside kicks at the end, please.

Bright spots would also include the 100-yard kickoff return by Adrian Bushell and the 35-yard interception by Malcolm Mitchell in the final nine seconds to slam the door.

But Andrell Smith had to make that catch.

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By Charlie Springer

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

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