U of L halts Wildcats with young studs

By on September 22, 2008

By Ashlea Hellmann

The University of Louisville football team will open up Big East play against the University of Connecticut Friday. The Cardinals have something to prove in the conference, after they were chosen to finish seventh out of eight teams in a preseason media poll.
The team, on the other hand, isn’t worrying about any preseason rankings.
“We are underdogs,” Victor Anderson, freshman running back, said. “I don’t really think that means anything. That’s just a personal opinion of someone.”
The Cards come into the game on a two-game win streak, including their most recent win over Kansas State University last week. The win was an acceptable for coach Steve Kragthorpe, but less than satisfying.
“We didn’t play a complete game tonight,” Kragthorpe said. “The pieces are there though.”
The players aren’t dwelling on the win, and are already working hard during the week to fix any errors in their game plan before Friday.
“We’ve just got to look forward to the Big East and keep our eyes on the prize, it’s still out there,” Anderson said. “We’ve just got to prepare like we never prepared.”
The Cards will need to prepare in order to play a complete game  against the Huskies, have averaged nearly 30 points per game in the early part of the season and have held opponents to around seven points a game.
The Huskies have a productive offense that averages more than 400 yards per game and a defensive unit that holds teams to less than 230 yards per game.
The Cardinals look to counter the Huskies’ offense with a defensive line that has had impressive numbers so far this season. Opponents have averaged just 243 yards per game against the Cards.
The U of L offense will look to ride on the productivity of its best offensive scorers: Anderson, senior quarterback Hunter Cantwell and sophomore wide receiver Doug Beaumont. Cantwell and Beaumont connected for two touchdowns in the win over Kansas State, while  Anderson has rushed for 321 yards so far this season. Beaumont leads the team with 23 catches for 279 yards.
Even the younger Cardinals are prepared to dive head first into Big East play, and they are looking to do so with a positive attitude.
“There are a lot of good teams and we feel like we have a good football team and we can compete in the Big East,” Anderson said.
Despite the fact that the Big East is considered to have struggled so far this season, the players aren’t looking too far ahead to the rest of the season. They know their first challenge will be Connecticut.
“We need to come out and start getting focused for Connecticut,” Cantwell said. “Just focus on them and worry about the other games when that comes.”
The Cards will kick off this Friday, at Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium at 8 p.m.

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