College Football Picks: Louisville Cardinals Futures

Joe Catalano

Wednesday, February 13, 2013 7:09 PM GMT

Most of the betting world didn’t have faith in quarterback, Teddy Bridgewater, as the Big East leading Cardinals came into the ALL STATE Sugar Bowl as a double-digit betting underdog.

Recap

Not only did they cover the spread, but the Cardinals walked out of Louisiana with a double-digit victory over the 3rd ranked Florida Gators.

“The Big East is a cupcake conference”, was the unanimous opinion of most people around the world and they might be correct. Can Louisville, as the 7th ranked favorite to win it all, shock the world and compete with the Alabama’s of college football?

Poise

The 2013 NCAA season stops and starts for the Cardinals with the arm of soon to be junior, Teddy Bridgewater. Bridgewater has discipline, talent, and can play through pain. Even though he threw for 3718 yards with 27 touchdowns and 8 interceptions, the numbers don’t always tell the story, but Bridgewater didn’t have one game in where he threw more picks than TD’s.

This is a quarterback that beat Rutgers with a broken wrist and a sprained ankle while also getting his helmet handed to him in the Sugar Bowl. There’s nothing that this young man won’t do to win a ball game and Louisville has to feel confident in the upcoming season with Bridgewater behind center.

Experience at Running Back

Louisville hopes to have its leading man, Senorise Perry, back at running back. Perry tore his anterior cruciate ligament in a game against Syracuse last season. In the 9 games prior to this, he ran for 705 yards and 11 touchdowns. Think of how good that this team can be with Perry back as starter!

Soon to be senior, Jeremy Wright carried the bulk of the load with the loss of Perry. Wright is a grinder that tailed off during the end of the season, but he still managed to run or 824 yards and 10 touchdowns on the season. When it counted most, Wright came up with a legitimate accounting of himself in the Sugar Bowl.

When it comes to making crucial catches, look for DeVante Parker to be Bridgewater’s main target. Parker caught a touchdown in each of his last 6 games. This will be a hookup that you’ll see a lot this season.

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Pass Defending

While Louisville had major problems against the run, their pass defense was the best in the Big East Conference.

The Cards lose first-team Big East cornerback, Adrian Bushell, to graduation, but safeties, Hakeem Smith and Calvin Pryor, return. Along with 90 tackles during the season, Pryor’s only sack of the season came in the Sugar Bowl. Experience will help a defense in Louisville that’s lacking talent.

Recruiting

I think that it’s ironic how Florida, the team that Louisville punished in the Sugar Bowl, got all top flight recruits, while the Cardinals got a fraction of what the Gators received. High school players are attracted to the SEC due its amount of success. Nonetheless, Louisville managed to get their share of prospects.

Quick?

You wouldn’t know it by his 4.72 time in the 40 yard dash, but Louisville picked up the 79th ranked recruit in the nation , wide receiver, James Quick. Quick is known for his overall toughness and can be used a return man also. A Bridgewater to Quick combination could possibly turn into an immediate success. Only time will tell.

Outcome

Louisville will be one of the top 10 football teams in the nation in this upcoming season. The one part of their game that worries me is their defense. Without a legitimate defense against the rush, they’re not in the class of teams like Alabama. Nonetheless, expect to see a lot of wild shootouts with your Big East college football picks involving this possible 2 loss team this season.