Bridgewater plays starring role

Charlie Strong stacked the deck against Teddy Bridgewater and the first team offense during Saturday's spring game. It didn't matter as the talented sophomore quarterback was the star of the day.

Charlie Strong stacked the deck against Teddy Bridgewater in Saturday's Red-White game at Papa John's Cardinal Stadium.

Strong spotted the White team 21 points to start the game, then kept the clock running in the second half.

Bridgewater, Louisville's talented sophomore quarterback, still played the starring role, leading the Red team on three scoring drives in a 28-24 victory.

After completing 13 of 14 passes in the first half for 171 yards and two touchdowns, Bridgewater finished 19 for 21 for 257 yards. He connected with DeVante Parker, Andrell Smtih and Dominque Brown for scores.

The Big East Freshman of the Year, Bridgewater looked smooth on the first series, converting a third and long to keep the initial drive going before capping it with a 26 yard scoring strike to Parker, who had 3 catches for 47 yards.

On the second series, Bridgewater found tight end Nate Nord to move the ball out near midfield, then Senorise Perry and Bridgewater ripped off a pair of nice runs to the 35. But the drive stalled before John Wallace missed a 45 yard field goal attempt. The first team offense was also stopped on their third series after a penalty created a second and 25 situation.

That's when Bridgewater asserted himself.

Trailing 24-7 late in the second quarter, Bridgewater found Parker for a first down. The next play nearly spelled disaster after Jeremy Wright fumbled trying to gain additional yardage before one of his own linemen recovered. Senorise Perry, who rushed 10 times for 49 yards, had no problem picking up the first down on a key fourth and one at the 40 yard line. Bridgewater then hit Scott Radcliff on a crossing pattern for 15 yards, before finding Andrell Smith for a 29 yard score with 1:03 remaining in the first half.

Down 24-14, Bridgewater threaded the needle to Radcliff deep in his own territory on the Red's opening drive of the second half, then found Damian Copeland deep down field to quickly move the offense to midfield. A few plays later, Dominique Brown capped the drive with an 18 yard touchdown reception from Bridgewater to cut the White lead to 24-21 with 4:11 remaining in the third quarter, breaking several tackles on his way to the end zone.

Though Bridgewater sat out the fourth quarter, Will Stein led the Red on a game-winning touchdown drive late in the game when he connected with Demarcus Topp for a 21 yard score.

The Red defense, led by Adrian Bushell (4.5 tackles, one PBU), Brandon Dunn (3.5 tackles) and Daniel Brown (3.5 tackles) limited the White team to just 130 yards on 42 plays.

Spring Game Notebook

John Wallace missed wide right from 45 yards. On his next attempt in the second quarter, Wallace connected from 52 yards out.

Starting OT Alex Kupper was injured on the first series and was helped off the field with an apparent left knee injury. He walked to the football complex on his own without any assistance for evaluation. With Kupper out, Jake Smith slid from guard to tackle, while Kamran Joyer took Smith's slot inside. Official word about Kupper's knee from UofL sports information was that the ACL appeared intact, though an MRI was being taken to assess the damage.

R-FR OT Ryan Mack was helped off the field with apparent left leg injury on the second series.

Sophomore DE B.J. Dubose recorded a sack of second team QB Will Stein to force third and long. The defense held, forcing Wallace's 52 yard FG attempt.

Tennessee transfer Matt Milton has a nice reception from Will Stein to move the chains in the second quarter.

Scott Radcliff led Louisville's wide receivers with 9 receptions for 119 yards. Corvin Lamb had seven rushes for 22 yards and caught two passes for 27 yards. Jeremy Wright gained 31 yards on 6 rushes. Dominique Brown didn't record a carry, but caught three passes for 34 yards.

Will Stein completed 17 - 26 passes for 178 yards and one score. Bridgewater and Stein were each sacked one time.

The Red committed 7 infractions for 55 yards - a stat that didn't please Charlie Strong.

UofL officials estimated the crowd at 15,000.

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