May 4, 2012

Strong: Team toughness starts with the run

  • Strong's Offensive Philosophy Hasn't Changed
    Since his arrival in Louisville Coach Charlie Strong's offensive philosophy has remained the same - run the football.

    "I've said this and I believe this. In order for us to be an outstanding football team, we need to be able to run the football. To run the football, you have to play physical," said Strong. "You look at Senorise Perry and Dominique Brown. We have the backs with Corvin Lamb and Jeremy Wright where they can be physical thought to run behind their pads now and get positive yards. That has to happen," he said.

    Perry led all rushers in the Spring Game, rushing six times for 15 yards for the White team and four times for 31 yards while wearing red. Perry had a surprising spring after transitioning from defense. The other back emerging was Corvin Lamb, who rushed seven times for 22 yards in the Spring Game.

    One of the first things Strong did in his first season was to announce running back Bilal Powell as the face of the team. Strong isn't ready to bestow that title on any of the current runners, but he has a steady group of young talent from which to choose.

    "I'd like to see one guy emerge, but if you look at the way the guys played over the course of spring ball, I would say that Senorise Perry probably had the best spring. You watch him run and he runs so hard," he said. "You have four guys there that are a good group of running backs. WE should just keep running these guys in and out and giving them each some plays and see what's. You like one guy in there because it's a system that is all about getting enough touches," he said.

    Strong believes the team's emphasis to run the ball wil also toughen the defense.

    "What happens when you run the football is the strength of your team is going to be about toughness. And it's going to make the defense tougher because they're going to have to stop the run," he said.

  • Cards Can Rush the Passer
    For the defensive-minded Strong, winning starts in the trenches for Strong. He spotted the white team 28 points in the spring game because he wanted to see whether or not his defense could hold them for the rest of the game. The group answered the call, giving up just 3 points the rest of the way.

    "We have a lot of starters coming back on our defense so they should play like that. You look at Brooks, Brandon Dunn, BJ Dubose, you look at Mount. You have guys that can make plays. You have guys that can rush the passer. Then you have Daniel Brown who is a starter coming back and you have Mount as the outside linebacker."

    With three full classes of recruits to build up the defense, Strong has the pieces in place to develop the defense he envisions.

    "You feel pretty good about what you have, now it's all about where are we going to take this team. You have the summer to get ready. They have a couple weeks to finish up classes and then we get them back in here this summer. Then we can build the football team and just watch how we can develop as a team. We have to develop as a team," he said.

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