Louisville v. West Virginia
12 p.m. Noon
Morgantown, West Virginia
TV: Big East Network
Radio: WHAS 840 AM/790 WKRD
West Virginia Game
The Cardinals trail in the series with West Virginia 10-2 and have dropped the last four encounters.
The Cardinals are 1-7 all-time in Morgantown with the only win coming in 1990 - a 9-7 win by the Cardinals.
Louisville is just 1-5 against the Mountaineers since joining the BIG EAST Conference.
Louisville dropped the last meeting in Morgantown 17-9 in 2009.
The Cardinals dropped a 46-44 triple overtime decision in Morgantown in 2005 - Louisville's first season in the BIG EAST.
Charlie Strong is 0-1 all-time versus West Virginia after last season's 17-10 home loss to the Mountaineers.
Last Time against West Virginia
West Virginia kept its hopes for a Big East title alive with a rugged 17-10 win over Louisville. Noel Devine ran for 58 yards and a touchdown and West Virginia's defense hounded the Cardinals all afternoon as the Mountaineers set up a showdown with rival Pittsburgh on Friday.
Louisville was hoping to become bowl eligible for the first time since 2007 but could muster little offense. The Cardinals managed just 171 total yards, never got into a rhythm and committed a handful of critical penalties.
West Virginia wasn't much better, but the Mountaineers made enough plays to remain in the thick of the Big East race. Cornerback Keith Tandy's interception with 2:22 remaining snuffed out Louisville's last-gasp drive as West Virginia won a conference road game for the first time this season.
Louisville trails the all-time series against West Virginia 2-10.
The Mountaineers have won four straight against the Cardinals.
Louisville is 1-7 all-time in Morgantown and have not won there since 1990.
Louisville and West Virginia will be meeting in November for the fifth straight season.
The Cardinals are 1-5 against the Mountaineers in November.
Louisville is 1-5 against West Virginia as a member of the BIG EAST.
Eight of the last nine meetings have been decided by 10 points or less.
Last year's game turned into a punting affair when Louisville's Chris Philpott (eight) and West Virginia's Gregg Pugnetti (seven) combined for 15 punts.
Chris Philpott rushed for 21 yards on a fake punt against the Mountaineers last season.
West Virginia held Louisville to 26 yards rushing with 21 of those coming on Philpott's run.
Louisville has held the West Virginia offense to under 300 yards in the past two meetings. Last season, West Virginia was held to 261 yards of total offense after being limited to 273 in 2009.
The Cardinals have limited the Mountaineers to 15 of fewer first downs in each of the last two contests. Last season West Virginia had 15 first downs after only having 14 in 2009.
Louisville threw five touchdown passes against West Virginia in 1993, which is tied for third most in a single game dating back to 1989.
West Virginia fumbled six times in 1989, which is tied for the third-most by an opponent in a single game dating back to 1989.
Joshua Tinch hauled in 13 receptions against the Mountaineers in 2005, a total tied for the fifth-most receptions in a single game in school history.
Klaus Wilmsmeyer booted an 84-yard punt in the 1990 meeting, giving him the second longest punt in school history.
Five years earlier, Kirk Kennedy drilled a 68-yard punt which is tied for the sixth-longest in school history.
Louisville / West Virginia Connections
Louisville offensive line coach Dave Borbely coached with West Virginia cornerbacks coach David Lockwood at Notre Dame in 2001.
Louisville cornerback Charles Gaines and offensive lineman John Miller attended Miami Central High School with West Virginia offensive tackle Marquis Lucas.
Cardinal cornerback Andrew Johnson attended Southridge High School as did Mountaineer defensive back Matt Moro.
On Track Again
ƒnThe Cardinals seem to have found their running game for the second straight week versus Syracuse. Louisville rushed 33 times for 145 yards and a touchdown in the win over Syracuse.
In their last two wins against Rutgers and Syracuse, the Cardinals are averaging 166.0 yards and have two rushing touchdowns. The Cardinals had a season-best 61-yard touchdown run by Victor Anderson in the win over Syracuse.
After not recording a 100-yard rusher in their first six games, the Cardinals just missed having their second straight 100-yard runner when senior Victor Anderson rushed 11 times for 93 yards in the win over Syracuse.
The Cardinals returned to form on Oct. 21 in the win over Rutgers. The Cardinals ran for a season-high 187 yards in the 16-14 victory.
The Cardinals 187 yards was the best this season, marking just the third time that Louisville rushed for more than 150 yards in a game. Louisville rushed for 159 yards against Murray State and 181 versus Kentucky, which were all wins. Louisville is 3-0 when rushing for more than 150 yards and 1-4 when they fail to reach that plateau.
Louisville, who averages just 3.5 yards per carry for the season, averaged a season-best 5.5 yards per carry in the 16-14 win over Rutgers. Louisville averaged 4.4 yards in the win over Syracuse.
Louisville ranks 92nd in the nation in rushing, averaging 123.1 per game, which would be the lowest mark since 2002 when Louisville totaled 106.7 yards a game.
According to Phil Steele's pre-season magazine, the Cardinals rank 119th of 120 in returning experience in the nation. Louisville returned just 11 starters, which included seven on defense and four on offense. Louisville played 11 true freshmen in the first six contests, which is more than they played all of last season (10).
The Cardinals have played 26 players who have made their first collegiate appearances through the first eight games. Here are the players who have made their first collegiate appearances: Teddy Bridgewater, Adrian Bushell, Michaelee Harris, Jamon Brown, Kamran Joyer, Jamaine Brooks, Stephan Robinson, Nick Heuser, Jake Smith, John Miller, Andrew Johnson, Lorenzo Mauldin, B.J. Dubose, Calvin Pryor, Justin Gilmore, Kamal Hogan, Terell Floyd, George Durant, DeVante Parker, Grant Donovan, Jordan Paschal, Eli Rogers, Jarel McGriff -Culver, Deiontrez Mount, Chris White and Chris Acosta.
Most Complete First Half
The Cardinals enjoyed one of their most complete halves of football in the 27-10 win over Syracuse. Louisville jumped out to a 14-3 half-time lead, which was their biggest half-time lead of the year since a 21-0 lead against Murray State.
Coming into the Rutgers' game, the Cardinals had scored just seven points at home in the second half this year and hadn't scored in the third quarter this year. Louisville tallied 21 first-half points in a win over Murray State to hold on for a 21-9 win. The Cardinals jumped out to a 13-7 lead at the half against Marshall,
only to fall 17-13 to the Thundering Herd.
However, the Cardinals snapped out of its funk Friday night versus Rutgers. Louisville scored nine points in the third stanza, including its first third-quarter touchdown when a pair of freshmen hooked up. Teddy Bridgewater connected with Michalee Harris on an 18-yard reception.
The 2010 season saw the same scenario. Louisville scored 125 first-half points, but could only manage 54 points in the second half of seven home games.
Chichester Continues Streak
Senior tight end Josh Chichester has caught a pass in 19 straight games after catching one pass for two yards and a touchdown in the win over Syracuse last Saturday afternoon.
Chichester had one of the game's biggest plays in the fourth quarter on a third and three in the win over Rutgers. Trying to hold on to a 16-14 lead, Chichester extended the drive when he had an 11-yard reception to give the Cardinals a big fi rst down.
Chichester is tied for second on the team with 21 receptions for 282 yards and is averaging 13.4 yards a reception.
Chichester has played in 44 career games and has caught 90 career passes for 1,142 yards and 10 touchdowns. He is averaging 12.7 yards per catch for his career.
Offense Putting it Together
The Cardinals still rank 103rd nationally in total offense, but have appeared to have turned the corner over the last two games. Louisville has won two straight games this season for the first time and the play of the offense has been a bright spot.
The Cardinals have out-scored the opposition 21-0 in the first quarter after jumping out to a 14-0 lead last Saturday. The Cardinals are averaging 21.5 points per game, but have averaged 166.0 yards running the football.
Louisville has averaged 166.0 yards per game on the ground over the last two games, which is its best two-game output of the season. The Cardinals ran for 187 yards against Rutgers and 145 in the win over the Orange. Louisville is 3-1 this year when running for a touchdown.
Freshman Teddy Bridgewater is averaging 160.0 yards throwing the football in the last two games, but has tossed three touchdowns and one interception, and is completing 64.3 percent of his passes during that span.
Brown Tied for Team Lead
ƒnDespite practicing one day last week, sophomore Preston Brown led the Cardinals with seven tackles and recorded his first two sacks. Brown has quietly been a productive member of the defense, moving him into a tie for first on the team with 55 tackles.
In his return home to Cincinnati, Brown recorded a team high 10 tackles in the 25-16 loss.
Brown registered 10 or more tackles for the second time in his career. He had a career-best 12 in the win over Murray State to start the season.
The Cardinals are known as a pressure team on defense and its been noticeable in the amount of the sacks the Cardinals have accrued in the last two seasons.
Louisville is ranked 14th nationally in sacks with 2.88 after notching four sacks in the win over Syracuse. It's Louisville's 13th straight game with a sack dating back to last season.
The last time Louisville failed to record a sack was in a 20-3 loss at Pittsburgh last season.
Sophomore Marcus Smith recorded his fifth sack of the season on Ryan Nassib in the first quarter, all of which have come in the past four games. The last Cardinal with that many sacks in a four-game span was Rodney Gnat, who had 6.5 from Sept. 11-Oct. 9 of last season.
Not So Offensive
ƒnThe Cardinals defense is one of the best in the country, limiting the opposition to just 295.6 yards of total offense this season and just 4.6 yards a play.
The Cardinals are ranked 12th nationally in defense and have not allowed an opponent to register 400 yards of total offense this season. Marshall recorded the highest output this year, totaling 353 yards in a 17-13 loss at home.
The last time Louisville allowed an opponent to total 400 or more yards of total offense was in a 35-27 loss at home to Cincinnati last season - a span of 14 games.
SU quarterback Ryan Nassib threw for a season-low 162 yards in the contest on a season-worst 4.5 yards per attempt. All 10 third down passing plays in the game for the Orange failed to result in a first down. Over the past four games, Louisville is yielding an average of just 174.8 yards through the air, compared to 221.8 over the first four weeks.