By Spencer Laws
Louisville loses another game many thought would be a win.
After an early 7-0 start, Louisville responded with two touchdowns in the first quarter, ending the half with a 7-point lead over Florida State, 21-14.
Quarterback Malik Cunningham had an exceptional game up to this point, fully able to showcase both sides of his game, passing and running.
The Cardinal offense, without starting running back Tiyon Evans and second-stringer Jalen Mitchell, relied on Trevion Cooley and Jawhar Jordan to pick up the load that was left for them. Both combined for over 160 yards all-purpose yards, with Cooley breaking into the end zone twice. The Cards seemed to have an answer for everything the Seminoles through at them.
Cunningham and the Cardinal offense had to chance to close the game out with a touchdown to win the game after getting the ball back with 1:37 left on the clock.
The offense was able to move the ball up to the Louisville 46-yard line, as the fan base regained hope with the clock dwindling to under a minute. Unfortunately, a costly decision by the 5th year starter ended the comeback attempt. FSU picked off Malik with 37 seconds left to seal the loss for the Cards.
Two narratives about Louisville continue to be the story on the field. Similar to the thoughts of many fans and experts last week, defensive tackles combined with a few too many penalties continue to be the main sticking points. The Cardinals are currently bottom 15 in rush yards given per carry, and this week’s opponent is 9th best for yards per carry.
Louisville has started this season committing 29 penalties for 204 yards just 3 weeks in.
Head coach Scott Satterfield addressed the self-inflicted wounds in his press conference on September 20th, stating, “It’s the pre-snap penalties that really affect you. Being offsides, false starts, those types of things. We have to get better at that.”
The Cards looked in total control over the Seminoles, as former Louisville-turned-Florida State quarterback Jordan Travis exited the game with a leg injury, leaving FSU to bring in their backup.
Tate Rodemaker felt the pressure early from the Cardinal defense. Rodemaker was sacked 3 times and threw an interception.
Rodemaker was eventually able to turn around his performance, leading the ‘Noles to come back and take the lead in the final minutes. While doing so, Rodemaker threw for two impressive touchdowns to Florida State wide receiver Johnny Wilson.
Wilson put up admittedly impressive numbers, ending the game with 7 receptions, 149 yards, and 2 touchdowns.
Satterfield was questioned in his post-game press conference about matching up against Wilson.
“Is that the big guy? That’s what made him so difficult. He’s 6’7, 200 and something pounds. We have to play better outside.”” Satterfield said.
Returning Full Circle
With this result, the Louisville faithfuls return to the same attitude they had after the Syracuse game. Furthermore, the same question remains:
How much longer should Satterfield have if he continues to churn out these results?
The Cardinals are back in action this Saturday to right the ship at Cardinal Stadium before starting ACC play, hosting the University of South Florida at noon in front of Card Nation.
File Photos // The Louisville Cardinal //