The focus was back where it belonged — on football — among University of Louisville fans during the annual Kickoff Luncheon. More than 1,100 partisans packing the Crystal Room at the convention center.
Everybody was there except Vice President of Athletics Tom Jurich, who because of undergoing a procedure on his eyes, is under doctor’s orders to take a few days off. Standing in for Jurich was Senior Associate Julie Herman with some did she really say that comments:
“It’s just phenomenal to be a Cardinal fan right now,” said Hermann. “There are 25 Big East titles up for grabs, and we’re excited about our opportunities to capture a few of them this year, and possibly compete for some national championships. We’re going to compete for titles.”
Not stopping there, she described Steve Kragthorpe as “one of the finest football coaches in America and the right person to rebuild build this football program. He’s doing it the right way and I know Louisville fans are going to be proud.”
Hermann also indicated that 93% all seats had been sold for the opener against Indiana State and she was expecting a sellout.
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The football players were interspersed with fans. Ted High, a 6-foot-2, 310-pound junior college transfer from El Camino Junior College in Compton, Calif., was seated at our table. The big defensive tackle consumed only two steaks and plenty of mashed potatoes while laying off the bread.
Ted said he loves the program and the facilities and greatly respects the coaching staff. “The weight room is out of this world and the stadium is beautiful,” he said. “We’ve been working our tails off, and I think Louisville fans are going to like this team”
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Memorable quotes from Steve Kragthorpe during the luncheon:
- “Everybody loves football, if you have a brain that is.”
- “We’ve got a very competitive bunch of players who not only have great heart, but have a great character and will do things the right way. You’re going to like the way they challenge people.”
- “We have our team’s name on the front of our jerseys because we play for Louisville, and our player’s names on the back because we play for our families.”
- “Our motto will be: Attack, attack. attack.”
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Players were introduced by teammates with the nicknames. Among the ones the observer was quick enough to jot down:
- Josh “6-foot-12” Chichester, sophomore wide receiver.
- Alan “Fidel” Castro, freshman quarterback.
- Lincoln “Town Car” Carr, freshman wide receiver.
- Zach “Rifleman” Stoudt, freshman quarterback
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