Weekly Louisville football notebook

The first kickoff to the college football season is less than a month away. Here's another edition of the weekly University of Louisville football notebook.


The University of Louisville wide receiver group has generated a lot of talk during the preseason, including converted defensive back Charles Gaines.

The 5-foot-11, 188-pound redshirt freshman started his college career on offense before being switched to defensive back prior to last season.

Now, Gaines is back on offense and drawing rave reviews.

"That guy is fast," linebacker Daniel Brown said. "He's everywhere and really doing good for them over on offense."

Gaines, who isn't allowed to talk to the media until he plays in a game, caught 60 passes as a sophomore and junior at Miami Central High School. He was considered one of the top 50 players in the Sunshine State in the Class of 2011.

U of L coach Charlie Strong said Gaines has been a solid addition to the receivers group and backup quarterback Will Stein said he "adds another dimension."

"Moving him to wide receiver has added enthusiasm to that group," Strong said of Gaines. "He is an outstanding player, but just having him out there talking. He is not talking to the defensive backs, but to his own group of guys and encouraging them."

Gaines has been deemed "the talker' by many of his teammates. It was visible last weekend during the two open practices, giving it to his teammates.

"You can stand outside the gates and hear him," Daniel Brown said with a laugh. "He's one of those guys that brings a lot of life to practice. When you are down, he really helps get you up. He tells the defensive backs good job and everybody.

"He does talk a lot. We try and shut him up."


Sophomore quarterback Teddy Bridgewater said with added strength and muscle that he feels more comfortable with throwing every route that offensive coordinator Shawn Watson has in his playbook this season.

But that doesn't mean Bridgewater doesn't have a favorite route.

"I like to throw that 10-12-yard out route," Bridgewater said.

That route is typically a tougher throw to complete for quarterbacks, but Bridgewater said all of the U of L quarterbacks like to throw it.

"(Watson) calls it big-boy ball," Bridgewater said. "I feel I am ready to play big boy ball. I feel like Will (Stein) is ready to play big boy ball and Luke (Brohm) is ready to play big boy ball. We just love throwing out routes.

"The fun thing is throwing it on time."


Strong and defensive coordinator Vance Bedford have both lauded the depth the squad has this season at the defensive line spot.

Bedford said he has several players he can plug in at each spot on the line, including some of the younger guys who are improving.

But does Bedford have enough depth yet?

"You never have enough," he said. "If I give you $1 million dollars right now, you want $2 million. You never have enough that's the name of the game.

"You always want more than you have. But I can tell you that I think we are better off, right now, than any time we have been here."


*The U of L kickoff luncheon will be held next Thursday at the Marriott Convention Center. The Cardinals will practice every day now, except Sundays for the next two weeks, many of those practices in the morning.

*Connecticut backup quarterback Michael Nebrich announced that he was transferring on Wednesday. He played in eight games as a freshman and passed for 69 yards. The Huskies still have four quarterbacks on the roster.

*Ray Graham, one of the top running backs in the country, was back on the field for Pittsburgh earlier this week. Graham tore his ACL last September and went through his first practice since the injury.

*New Pittsburgh coach Paul Chryst announced last week that lineman Juantez Hollins was suspended for the season for rules violations, while backup quarterback Mark Myers was no longer with the team.

*South Florida's B.J. Daniels and Syraucse' Ryan Nassib were on the watch list for Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award, which is an award that is given annually to the nation's top senior quarterback.

*Louisville reported on Wednesday that it only took 19 minutes for the school to sell the more than 2,000 tickets for the season-opener against Kentucky. UK had returned the tickets from its allotment on Monday.

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