--By Mike Gilpatrick
--Photo by Jared Anderson
The Louisville Cardinals are *sortve* back. For the first time since Lamar Jackson, the Louisville football competed with a top-10 team with better-than-expected performance: Tied until the final minutes of the first half, and able to cover the spread against Notre Dame.
It may have not been a win; but after last season’s implosion (putting it nicely, Bobby Petrino), Louisville fans are glad for the moral victory.
Scott Satterfield and Co. look for their first win on Saturday; hosting Eastern Kentucky. The FCS Colonels have a 1-0 record after destroying Valparaiso 53-7 in Richmond last Thursday.
Here’s what to expect:
About the shelling…
EKU played three quarterbacks, gained 442 yards of offense, held Valparaiso to less than 200; and won by an impressive margin.
Conor Blount received most of the snaps, and completed 6 of 11 for 62 yards and a pick. RB Alonzo Booth trotted into the end zone three times, and led both teams with 128 yards rushing.
The blowout was so bad, Eastern only punted once. When Phillip Richards did boot the ball, it went 47 yards.
Defensively, EKU had 12 tackles for a loss, and sacked the opposing quarterback two times.
But, as impressive as that sounds, Valparaiso only won two games last year. They were a bad football team.
Last time these two met…
You have to go in the history books to find the last matchup. On September 7th, 2013, a Charlie Strong led Louisville Cardinals football team destroyed the Colonels 44-7. The Cardinals put up 475 total yards of offense, held the Colonels to 206, and only punted three times the whole game.
Teddy Bridgewater completed 23 of 32 for 397 yards and 4 touchdowns, two to DeVante Parker.
Louisville owns an 18-7-1 record all-time against the Colonels, with the first matchup coming in 1927. They played every year from 1952 to 1961, and only two times this decade.
What to Expect
You can expect the Cardinals to win this matchup. According to ESPN’s Football Power Index, Louisville has a 96% chance of winning. After a tough week against Notre Dame, the easier opponent should be a welcomed sight for the entire team.
Expect the starters to get action in, before being pulled after the game gets out of hand.
My prediction: Louisville 42, Eastern Kentucky 14