By Sam Draut
The No. 7 Louisville Cardinal football team started 4-0 for just the eleventh time in school history. Here’s a look back at the previous ten teams.
1913- In just the second year of the program’s existence, the Cardinal football team won its first five games, including a 100-0 rout of Washington (Tenn.). U of L played its home games at Eclipse Park located on 7th
1925- U of L went 8-0 and only gave up two points the entire season. The 1925 team was the first of two Cardinal teams to finish the season undefeated in program history.
1947- In Frank Camp’s second year as head coach, he led U of L to a 7-0-1 record, the only other to team to finish the season undefeated.
1957-U of L started the year 6-0 in its first year playing at the Fairgrounds. Frank Camp led the team to the program’s first bowl game and bowl victory, a 34-20 victory over Drake in the Sun Bowl. The team finished 9-1.
1972- In Lee Corso’s final season as head coach, the Cardinals started 6-0 and finished 9-1. It was the program’s second Mountain Valley Championship in three years.
1993- U of L head coach Howard Schnellenberger directed the Cardinals to a 5-0 including a 41-10 victory over Texas at Cardinal Stadium. Quarterback Jeff Brohm led the team to a ranked win over Arizona State and the Cardinals finished 9-3. The season ended with an 18-7 victory over Michigan State in the Liberty Bowl.
2003- Bobby Petrino’s first year as head coach started 4-0, including road victories over Syracuse and rival Kentucky. But the Cardinals dropped three games in conference play and lost to Miami (Ohio) in the GMAC bowl, finishing the year 9-4.
2004- U of L was led by senior quarterback Stefan LeFors and local product Brian Brohm provided who cultivated one of the top offenses in the country. The Cardinals started the year 4-0 and then suffered a 41-38 at No. 3 Miami. U of L finished the season 11-1 including a Liberty Bowl victory over No. 10 Boise State. Louisville’s final season in Conference USA ended with an 8-0 record and a Conference Championship.
2006- The 8-0 start was the best in program history and after a 44-34 victory over No. 3 West Virginia the Cardinals carried National Championship talk and a No. 3 ranking to No. 12 Rutgers. U of L 28-25, street. The Cardinals finished the year 5-1 losing to Kentucky 20-0 but finished 6-1 in conference and won their first Big East Championship. Louisville appeared in its first BCS Bowl and defeated No. 12 Wake Forest 24-13. U of L finished its historic season 12-1, but shortly thereafter, lost head coach Bobby Petrino to the Atlanta Falcons.
2012- Louisville’s 9-0 start was the best in program history, but then dropped two consecutive conference games to Syracuse and UConn. After winning at Rutgers, the Cardinals earned a share of the Big East Championship and received a BCS bid to the Sugar Bowl. There, U of L defeated No. 4 Florida 33-23 in one of the biggest wins in school history. Louisville finished the year 11-2.
Looking back at the previous 10 seasons of that started 4-0, six of them resulted in bowl games, and U of L won five of the bowl games.