By Paul Sykes
Louisville football is about where most fans thought it would be at this time of the season, despite all the chatter about not meeting expectations. Whether the team has shown improvement or not may strongly hinge on one’s perspective, whether one looks at things objectively or subjectively.
- At the halfway point, Louisville is 2-4 overall and 0-2 in Big East play. My preseason picks and had Steve Kragthorpe’s team at 3-3, the Kentucky loss the only miss.
- Louisville has actually gained more first downs than the opposition, 119-111. Of these, 62 have come by air and 49 on the ground. I would have lost the bet on that stat.
- As for the highly-debated lack of third down conversions, Louisville has converted 35 of 91 times while limiting the opposition to 35 of 90 third down successes.
- Three linebackers leadÂ the tackling. Jon Dempsey with 33 solo, 31 assisted, Chris Campa with 21 solo and 20 assisted and Antwon Canady in fourth place with 17 solo and 12 assisted. Telling fact: both Dempsey and Campa are juco transfers.
- Justin Burke, despite his sidelining, still leads in passing attempts, passing touchdowns and interceptions. Louisville is averaging 237 yards through the air, the opposition 201 yards.
- Louisville has coughed up the ball seven times this year while recovering only one. U of L has lost at least one fumble in nine of the last 10 games.
- The longer the better? Ryan Payne is a perfect one of one attempt from 40- yards out on field goals. He’s three of four from 30-39 yds. and three of five from 20-29 yds.
My nominee for missing in action is Troy Pascley who had 12 catches and four touchdowns last season. Nowhere to be found in 2009. The pleasant surprise has to be Cameron Graham,Â a junior who has overcome the injuries that plagued him last year with 12 catches and two touchdowns.
How do you see the U of L finishing the season? Who has been a pleasant surprise thus far? Who are the underachievers?