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November 4, 2013
That was Charlie Strong's message to his team during their bye week this past week. Strong's message is that the season isn't over and Louisville, now 7-1, still has an opportunity to win a conference title and go to a BCS bowl.
Strong's "Remember November" mantra also refers to Louisville's late-season stumble in 2012, with losses to Syracuse and Connecticut. The UofL coach wants his players to realize that a lot can still happen in the final four weeks of the season.
First up for Louisville is a chance at redemption Friday against UConn. The Huskies beat Louisville 23-20 in three overtimes last season. The UofL players' sentiment is clear going into Friday night's 8:30 p.m. ESPN2 kickoff.
"I feel like they stole one from us last year," defensive end Marcus Smith said Monday.
If Louisville keeps winning, the Cardinals could finish 11-1 and miss out on a BCS bowl. A loss to UCF earlier this season pushed the Cardinals off the top spot in the American Athletic Conference standings.
Because of that loss, much of Louisville's BCS hopes rest on the outcome of the Houston-UCF game. If UCF continues to win, Louisville will not have a shot at a BCS bowl.
If Houston beats UCF and Louisville beats Houston and the teams finish in a three-way tie atop the AAC standings, Louisville could go to the BCS if it has the highest BCS ratings of the three tied teams.
Strong said he'll be watching the Houston-UCF game, but he won't place a call offering to help Houston this week, "No, I don't say anything to them. What is going to happen is going to happen."
Strong continued, "We are in the position we are in because of what we did, not what anyone else did. It's our own fault."