Cardinal stadium is getting several upgrades for the fall Monday, Jan 20 2020 

Victoria Doll —

The University of Louisville’s Athletic Department announced significant changes scheduled to take place at Cardinal Stadium to improve the game-day experience for the 2020 season opener. 

“This is another major step forward in our fan engagement strategy,” said U of L Athletic Director Vince Tyra. “The partnership established with Tailgate Guys last season was a great starting point, but this is an investment in every fan, not just those with premium seats, and this will help create more of a tradition around our football program. We’re excited to create this family environment that is missing around our stadium today.”

There are plans to have a new fan zone on the south side of the Central Avenue tunnel which will include a stage for live music, a beer garden, food truck options, a turf field and a family fun zone. U of L football spokesperson Rocco Gasparro said, “The construction of the fan zone is fluid, but could spend up to $1 million.”

These changes in the fan experience come with some drastic changes to parking. To help make the traffic flow more efficient, the purple lot will become a first-come, first-to-park model. A pass is still required to park in the purple lot; however, there will no longer be section-number parking for fans. 

U of L Athletics will no longer have access to the platinum T-lot located on the southeast corner of Floyd Street and Central Avenue due to the renovations of the parking lot and the addition of a new hotel; therefore, reserved parking will only remain in the platinum S and bronze lots. 

In an attempt to remain loyal to previous ticket holders, March 2020 ticket holders can make their parking decision before they open up the new options to the public. They can choose from the limited number of reserved parking passes, or choose the first-come, first-to-park option. The fans who have Cardinal Athletic Fund priority points will be presented the parking options first. 

In addition to the improvement in parking, U of L is working with multiple vendors in an attempt to improve both WiFi and cellular connection for fans. U of L Athletics has a goal by 2021 to have full mobile ticketing, and they view these changes as great steps forward. 

They will resume the seat refurbishing project that began last summer too. There are more than 37,800 seats in Cardinal Stadium that are receiving a new protective coat of paint that will return them to their former red color.

File Photo // The Louisville Cardinal 

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Louisville rolled past Mississippi State to win 2019 Music City Bowl Monday, Dec 30 2019 

By Cole Emery —

The Cards won the Music City Bowl for the second time in team history, defeating Mississippi State 38-28.

Louisville (8-5, 5-3) began well defensively, forcing a punt on Mississippi State’s first drive. 

On the Cards’ first offensive drive they drove 96 yards, but junior Dez Fitzpatrick fumbled on the one yard line. 

The Bulldogs capitalized on the turnover in only eight plays and capped it off with a rushing touchdown by senior Tommy Stevens.

At the beginning of the second quarter, Mississippi State (6-7, 3-5) scored after they drove down the field for 80 yards. Senior Nick Gibson scored off a rushing touchdown for three yards. 

During that drive, junior Dorian Etheridge was ejected from the game for kicking another player.

The following drive for the Cards only took five plays to reach the end-zone. Sophomore Micale Cunningham made plays through the air and ground for 43 yards, bringing the Cards to the Bulldog’s 33 yard line. 

The Cards brought out a trick play which paid off. Sophomore Tutu Atwell threw a passing touchdown for a double pass to freshman Marshon Ford. This touchdown brought the Cards to a 14-7 deficit.

On the following kick-off, sophomore Ternell Troutman forced a fumble that freshman James Turner recovered, giving the Cardinals possession at the Bulldog’s 32 yard line. The drive was stalled after several penalties and a failed fourth down attempt. 

After forcing a punt, the Cardinals drove down the field behind the arm of Cunningham. Sophomore Ryan Chalifoux kicked a field goal as time expired going into halftime. 

The Bulldogs took the lead into halftime 14-10.

Cunningham threw several touchdowns in the second half to senior Devante Peete and Ford. 

On a kickoff, graduate Gary McCrae forced a fumble that senior Khane Pass recovered for a 31 yard touchdown. This gave the Cardinals their first lead of the game 17-14 with 2:51 left in the third quarter.

Freshman Javian Hawkins got a five yard touchdown for the Cards after stopping the Bulldogs on fourth down. This gave Louisville a 38-21 lead with 2:13 left in the game. 

Stevens threw a late touchdown to junior Osirus Mitchell for 24 yards with 27 seconds left in the game, but it was not enough as the Cards recovered the onside kick. 

Cunningham finished with 279 passing yards, 81 rushing yards and two passing touchdowns. Atwell caught nine passes for 147 yards and threw a passing touchdown to Ford who caught two touchdowns during the contest. Hawkins ran for 105 yards and a touchdown.

File photo // The Louisville Cardinal

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Lynn Bowden Jr. wins Paul Hornung Award Wednesday, Dec 11 2019 

The UK wide receiver-turned-quarterback announced he will enter the 2020 NFL Draft after the Belk Bowl.

        

Coach Satterfield to receive ACC Coach of the Year Monday, Dec 9 2019 

By Cole Emery —

First year head coach Scott Satterfield is the first U of L coach to earn the ACC Coach of the Year award. This announcement happened Dec. 5. 

He is the sixth coach in NCAA history to receive this honor from two different schools in consecutive years. Satterfield won Sun Belt Coach of the Year last season with Appalachian State. 

Satterfield improved a Cardinal football team who went 2-10 last year without a win in the conference to a team with a 7-5 in the regular season and a 5-3 record in conference.

“I’m proud of my coaching staff who worked so hard to change the culture of this program and put our players in a position to succeed,” Scatterfield said.

Louisville finished 2nd in the Atlantic Division of the ACC despite their last place record in the division a year prior. They were projected to finish 7th this year. 

Their five-game win improvement marked the best improvement among the Power 5 conferences this season.

The Cardinals scored 32.7 points per game this year compared to 18.7 points per game last year. Satterfield also improved their defense, allowing 33.8 points per game compared to allowing 44 points per game last year. 

Satterfield will face off against Mississippi State (6-6, 3-5 SEC) in his first bowl appearance for the Cardinals in the Music City Bowl. The game will take place at Nissan Stadium in Nashville, Tenn. Dec. 30 at 4 p.m. on ESPN.

File Photo // The Louisville Cardinal 

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Cards football set to go bowling in Nashville Monday, Dec 9 2019 

By Luke Graham —

Coming off one of the worst years in Louisville football history, first year head coach Scott Satterfield has brought the Louisville football program back to a bowl game to finish the season.

Just days after the Cardinals (7-5, 5-3) found out that Scott Satterfield won ACC Coach of the Year and that four players were given all ACC honors with junior Mekhi Becton and sophomore Tutu Atwell on the 1st team, and freshman Javian Hawkins  and sophomore Hassan Hall on the 2nd team, they found out they were headed to Nashville for the Music City Bowl Game.

Louisville will meet up in Nashville and face off against Mississippi State (6-6,3-5). It has been two years since Cards have faced the Bulldogs to the date for the 2017 Music City Bowl.

On Dec. 30, 2017 they lost to Mississippi State in what would be Heisman winner Lamar Jackson’s last game as a Cardinal 31-27.

Louisville will look to make new fortune against the Bulldogs this time around. Led by sophomore quarterback Micale Cunningham the Cards look to take care of business in Nashville.

The city is buzzing about going bowling again and are hoping the Cards can win their first bowl game since 2015 against Texas A&M. Ironically enough, that was also the Music City Bowl.

With the Seniors going through a coaching change after playing with a Heisman winner, it would be nice to see them go out with a win to finish off their wild careers at Louisville.

Louisville looks to stay undefeated in Nashville this year after a win against Western Kentucky at a neutral site early in the season. The Cards will play at 4:00 pm on Dec. 30 on ESPN at Nissan Stadium.

Jessica Abell // The Louisville Cardinal 

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Louisville football earns academic award for first time Monday, Nov 18 2019 

By Matthew Keck —

The University of Louisville football team is having success on and off the field this year. They are one of six teams who will receive the 2019 American Football Coaches Association academic achievement award Jan. 13, 2020.

Rocco Gasparro, U of L football spokesman, said this is a testament to the players’ commitment to academics. “It shows families of players that we recruit that it’s important that our players do what is right on the field and in the classroom,” he said.

This is the first time the Cardinals have received this honor. Air Force, Alabama, Clemson, Rice and Utah are the other five schools receiving this award.

Gasparro said if the Cardinals football team can maintain focus on academics, they will be repeat winners for this award in the future.

Each school recorded a perfect 1,000 for their-single year Academic Progress Rate (APR) for the 2017-2018 season. This is only the second year the NCAA has used the single-year APR to select a winner.

The APR is used to hold institutions accountable for the academic progress of their student-athletes through a team-based metric. That metric accounts for the eligibility and retention of each student-athlete for the academic year.

The APR works as such:

  • Each student-athlete receiving athletically related financial aid earns one point for staying in school and one point for being academically eligible.
  • The team’s total points are divided by points possible and then multiplied by 1,000 to equal the team’s Academic Progress Rate.

Formerly, the award was based on a formula used by the College Football Association and AFCA from 1981 to 2007. From 2008 until 2017, the AFCA used the NCAA’s graduation success rate to score and select winners for this award.

Duke’s football program has received the most AFCA awards, earning 14 since 1981.

Head coach Scott Satterfield will be presented with the award during the honors luncheon in January 2020.

Graphic by Alexis Simon // The Louisville Cardinal

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Satterfield scores bowl game first season Sunday, Nov 17 2019 

By Gabriel Wiest —

With a 34-20 win against NC State, head coach Scott Satterfield secured bowl game eligibility his first season with Louisville.

After taking a harsh 52-27 loss against Miami, it was unclear if Louisville (6-4, 4-3) could bounce back against another ACC competitor. The away game against NC State added to the challenge. Louisville lost to NC State (4-6, 1-5) last year 52-10, putting pressure on Satterfield to change the tide.

Recap

After a dry first quarter, junior Dez Fitzpatrick caught a 43 yard pass from sophomore Micale Cunningham, putting the Cardinals on the scoreboard first. NC State answered Louisville with a touchdown and a field goal ending the first half in the lead 10-7.

The Cardinals surged in the third quarter against NC State, scoring three touchdowns. Sophomore Tutu Atwell started off the scoring in the second half with a 74 yard catch from Cunningham.

Freshman Marshon Ford continued the momentum with another long 42 yard pass from Cunningham. Graduate Ean Pfeifer ended off the quarter with another touchdown thrown by Cunningham leaving the score 27-10.

NC State answered the Cardinals after a dead third quarter with a touchdown in the beginning of the fourth. Ford then scored his second touchdown for the Cardinals. NC State had the final say, with a field goal, not enough to put the Wolfpack on top.

Overview

Cunningham helped lead the Cardinals to victory throwing four touchdown passes. The offense also took a passing heavy approach against NC State, passing 249 yards while rushing 77 yards.

On the book Louisville had less total yards than NC State with 377-326. However, Louisville’s defense tightened down in the red zone, making sure that NC State could not take advantage of the defensive line as other teams have this season.

With a 2-10 season last year, it is clear that Satterfield is taking steps in the right direction with the Cardinals already at .500 ball. Before the season started some Louisville fans were skeptical how the Satterfield era would look. With bowl game eligibility, Satterfield has not only secured fans’s concerns, but put Louisville in a growing spotlight.

Louisville will face off next against Syracuse Nov. 23 at 4 p.m. at Cardinal Stadium.

File Photo // The Louisville Cardinal

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U of L and John Schnatter reach settlement over stadium naming rights Sunday, Nov 3 2019 

By Matthew Keck —

The University of Louisville can finally put John Schnatter in the past. The University of Louisville Athletic Association announced Oct. 24 they have reached a five-year, $9.5 million settlement over the naming right’s deal for the football stadium.

The first payment of this deal to Schnatter will be $1.4 million and then $2 million each year over the next five years.

U of L athletic director Vince Tyra said the university is looking for a new naming rights partner but they are in no rush. “Our intention would be to try to get that buttoned up for next season and put a name back on the stadium,” said Tyra.

“Papa Johns” was removed from Cardinal stadium in July 2018 after Schnatter, Papa Johns founder, admitted to using racial slurs on a phone call. President Neeli Bendapudi was the leading force behind the removal of the name on the stadium.

After this incident Schnatter also resigned from his position as a board of trustee member at U of L.

Bendapudi said that Schnatter’s comments had fractured the community last year when the ordeal unfolded. “These comments were hurtful and unacceptable and they do not reflect the values of our university,” Bendpaudi said last year.

Schnatter’s naming rights deal with the university, which was negotiated back in 1996, was set to run through 2040.

Tyra said as U of L looks for a new sponsor for the stadium name they plan to sign a much shorter deal, more along the lines of a 10-year timeframe.

Whoever signs the new deal with U of L will be agreeing to a ‘morals’ clause, which was not included in Schnatter’s original deal. This would allow the university to void the deal if the partner comes into a public scandal.

Schnatter issued this statement in an email regarding the settlement:

“With Papa John’s being based in Louisville and me being the single largest shareholder in the company, I’m very glad to reach the agreement today with the University of Louisville. It was concluded with the best interests of the university and the students in mind. Something you can be sure of is that I will always support the community with passion and I will always work hard to inspire others to pursue their dreams just like I was able to pursue mine right here in Louisville, Kentucky.”

While the Papa Johns name is no longer affiliated with the stadium, their pizza is still sold at football games. The naming rights deal was a separate deal from the business itself.

File Photo // The Louisville Cardinal 

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Louisville takes down Virginia 28-21 at Cardinal Stadium Monday, Oct 28 2019 

By Jocelyn Kronoveter —

After a few close calls that kept fans on the edge of their seats, Louisville football defeated Virginia 28-21 at Cardinal Stadium on Oct. 26. Louisville now needs just one more win to be eligible for a bowl. 

The game started out with Virginia heading into the first quarter strong. Virginia sophomore Wayne Taulapapa ran six yards to score a touchdown, along with a goal kick from junior B.Delaney, landing the team a 7-point lead early into the first quarter.

With five minutes to spare, Louisville’s wide receiver sophomore Tutu Atwell scored a touchdown from 77 yards. Senior Blanton Creque followed with a goal kick to tie the teams 7-7. 

Creque missed his first goal kick of the game at the start of the second quarter. This was a disadvantage for Louisville when Virginia scored a second touchdown after Taulapapa was able to score from 19 yards, putting the Cavaliers in the lead 14-7. 

Louisville’s defense began to look increasingly stronger as the Cardinals became determined to rise back up in the third quarter. Less than five minutes in, freshman Javian Hawkins scored a touchdown to tie the teams again at 14-14.

Sophomore Micale Cunningham ran 25 yards to score a touchdown for Louisville at the start of the last quarter. With five minutes left, Hawkins scored another touchdown and sophomore Ryan Chalifoux goal kick was good, putting Louisville in the lead 28-14.

Senior Bryce Perkins for Virginia ran four yards for one last touchdown with less than three minutes left in the game. 

Head football coach Scott Satterfield explained his excitement about the outcome. “I’m really proud of our guys. I’m proud of our team and how they continued to fight and play with each other, and play together,” he said. 

Making this a memorable game, Louisville’s football team will now have to win only one more before they are eligible in the College Football Bowl. 

The next game will be held Nov. 9 in Florida against Miami.

File Photo / The Louisville Cardinal

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Louisville gets clawed by no. 3 Clemson Tigers Monday, Oct 21 2019 

By Mariam Prieto —

Louisville lost against No. 3 Clemson with a final score of 45-10 on Saturday Oct. 19. This was the Cardinals fourth ACC game and second conference loss.

This was Louisville’s first game against a top five ranking team under head coach Scott Satterfield.  “I’m proud of our guys, they continued to fight the whole way through,” he said.

In the first quarter, Louisville’s (4-3, 2-2) defense held it together, blocking Clemson’s (7-0, 4-0) advance. The Tigers only scored a field goal in the first quarter, ending 3-0.

The second quarter saw the Tigers take charge of  their offense, with a touchdown scored in the first minute of the quarter. The Cardinal’s defense suffered, and the Tigers scored another touchdown. Louisville scored a field goal and brought the score to 17-3 by the end of the quarter.

In the last two minutes of the third quarter, Clemson advanced on the Cards with a touchdown after rushing 49 yards. Clemson added a kick attempt to their touchdown, and finished the quarter with a score of 24-3.

The fourth quarter saw freshman Javian Hawkins make the sole Cardinal touchdown. Although their offense ramped up, Louisville’s defense took a hit. The tigers were able to get past the Cards and scored three touchdowns in the fourth quarter.

Freshman Evan Conley proved important to the defense with a combined passing of 107 yards, alongside sophomore Micale Cunningham. Hawkins rushed a total of 129 yards. Junior Dez Fitzpatrick received 63 yards, alongside sophomore Chatarius Atwell’s 37 yards.

Cunningham commented on the defense’s improvements. “We played better. We made them work for everything, and we didn’t really give them anything,” he said.

Clemson took the lead with a rushing average of 8.1, while Louisville ended with 3.6. Louisville had the higher receiving average of  13.4, while Clemson finished with 11.5.

Satterfield referred to the lack of conversions on Louisville’s end when he said, ” We didn’t make enough plays. The bottom line is that they out-executed us.”

“We were not able to get any momentum in that game.”

Louisville will face University of Virginia in their fifth conference match up on Oct. 26 at Cardinal Stadium.

Photo by Louise Scharff / The Louisville Cardinal

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