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May 27, 2014

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly


GOOD I know Kentucky baseball has two wins over Louisville baseball this season, but I think these NCAA pairings are good. Good for baseball in this state, and good for Louisville. The Cardinals have a chance - with two of their three weekend starters on the mound - to beat their rivals and put to rest a year's worth of bragging rights by the Wildcats. Yes, it is possible that Kentucky beats Louisville again, but what an opportunity for the Cardinals this weekend. A win in the NCAA Regional and UofL would likely face future conference foe Florida State. This is when Dan McDonnell shines and I am looking forward to watching this weekend's exciting games.

GOOD Kent State is not a bad team. They typically have a good pitcher or two, and they made a run to the College World Series in 2012. I spoke with Dan McDonnell earlier today and he said they hadn't made a decision on which pitcher to throw Friday night, but they were leaning toward running top starter Kyle Funkhouser out there because he respects Kent State's program so much. "Plus, if you get in a jam, that Friday guy could come back and give you a few innings Monday if he is durable, and Funk is one of the most durable arms we have." Justin Marks helped Louisville make a Super Regional by pitching on Friday and again on Monday recently.

Here is the schedule of games...



GOOD I labelled this GOOD because I didn't have an awesome category. Russ Smith, one of the top guards in Louisville history, is working out for NBA teams and trying to make his way in professional basketball. Now that he is all moved out of Louisville's Minardi Hall, Smith is making good on his long-standing goal of owning a sloth.




Yep, you read that right. Russ Smith wants to own a sloth.

GOOD Louisville finished its first - and only - season in the AAC with 11 team championships. The Cardinals finished runner-up in four others. The rest of the AAC won 15 titles combined. The Cardinals also won three Big East titles despite only competing in two sports in the old league. This year didn't have the same national punch as last year's "Year of the Cardinal", but it was another extremely successful season for Louisville Athletics.




UGLY In my line of work, I get sent photos of of tattoos more than I'd really like to admit. Some of them are cool looking, but most, to my eyes, are dreadful. Let's file this one under the dreadful category.




GOOD Louisville men's golf finished ninth at the Auburn NCAA Regional. It was a good solid season for the Cardinals, but it wasn't the kind of finish to the tournament they had hoped for. The young Cardinals were in contention for a spot in the NCAA Championships as they hung around fourth of fifth place for part of the tournament. They fell from the fifth and qualifying spot to the ninth spot in the final round.

BAD Brandon Bender is back in the news, this time for helping two players get signed by Oregon. Pat Forde brings up his name in regard to Oregon's shady side. Forde writes: "Dana Altman has a reputation as the straightest of arrows, a family man whose personal conduct is said to be above reproach. But it is increasingly difficult to square that pristine reputation with the University of Oregon basketball coach's problematic roster. Or what's left of it. He's down to 10 scholarship players after three were dismissed from the team last week, in the wake of an investigation into an alleged sexual assault of an Oregon coed (the investigation yielded no charges). Some of the remaining names on the roster are noteworthy as well, for the company they've kept. This has been a messy run for a reputedly clean man." Click here to read the full article.


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