1. It's all coming together for Cards: Rick Pitino said it best after the game when he said, "All the parts are coming together, and it is what we had hoped." The starters are playing their roles, the reserves are coming on strong and the defense is really, really solid. The Cardinals haven't had a ‘bad' game this season, Pitino's teams always play their best ball late in the season and this year is no exception. It appears the Cardinals are primed for a long run in the postseason.
2. Siva makes a rebound effort: After his awful shooting performance in the Syracuse game, Peyton Siva made a nice rebound. He took the ball right at Cincinnati off the opening tip and was in attack mode most of the game. He finished 5 of 13 from the field and had 11 points, four assists and two steals. Siva hit that long three-pointer at the halftime buzzer that gave the Cardinals a lift. He didn't play his best game and did pick up four fouls with just under 10 minutes left in the game, but Siva was really good in the first half. It was great to see him shake off Saturday's awful performance with a solid effort.
3. The ‘other' parts are playing well: Pitino has said all season he doesn't mind putting players off the bench in because there's not much drop off. Now, folks are seeing exactly what he means. Kevin Ware, Luke Hancock and Stephan Van Treese, had another solid game, while Montrezl Harrell hit only 1 of 5 from the field but was a major factor in his 14 minutes. Harrell had the blocked thee-pointer that led to his monster dunk and was on the ball for five in-bounds plays that led to three turnovers and two times Cincinnati had to call timeout. Hancock had a stretch where he hit a runner, three-pointer and then an alley-oop to Chane Behanan for a big slam. And Ware, well he was really good again on both ends. He had five points and two steals and is looking more and more comfortable on the floor every game. Van Treese had four points and four rebounds in nine minutes and always seems to make a key play when he gets in. The depth is there right now as Pitino has said it would be. These four guys are playing at a high level.
4. The double-bye is huge: The win gives the Cardinals a 13-4 record in the Big East Conference and a double-bye in the tournament. It's not just about playing well in March but this double-bye is huge. The Cardinals will now not play in the tournament until Thursday and then the semifinals are Friday with the title game slated for Saturday – of next week. There's still a chance for the Cardinals to win or tie for the Big East title, but at this point the double bye is just as big. Just look at Syracuse, the Orange could end up being the No. 6 seed.
5. A few leftovers: The game marked the 11th time this season the Cardinals' opponent had more turnovers (21) than field goals (18). . . . The Cardinals rank third nationally in steals per game and have double-digit steals in 22 of the last 30 games. . . . U of L is 22-0 when leading at halftime. . . . The U of L defense has held an opponent under 40 percent shooting for the 19th game this season. . . . The crowd of 22,739 was the eighth largest in Yum Center history. Three of the top 10 crowds in the buildings history have come this season.