U of L football: Weekly notebook

The University of Louisville football team is set to begin preparation for the Russell Athletic Bowl on Dec. 28 when the Cardinals face Miami in Orlando, Fla. Here is the latest edition of Cardinal Authority's weekly notebook:

Cincinnati WIN GIVES CARDS A BOOST

The Louisville football team heads back to the practice field for the first time since a win over Cincinnati last week with a little swagger.

Several of the U of L players said they needed a little something to boost the confidence of the team and that came with a huge win over the Bearcats.

U of L won the game in overtime and takes some of that confidence after an 11-1 season into the Russell Athletic Bowl on Dec. 28 against Miami, Fla.

"It was extremely important going forward," center Jake Smith said of the win over Cincinnati. "We take a lot of pride in coming out and winning ballgames. A lot of people said we didn't have anything to play for and I completely disagree.

"We were playing for our pride, the names on the front and back of our jerseys, our families and the city of Louisville. So we had a lot to play for."

SPIDERMAN WITH ANOTHER AMAZING CATCH

U of L quarterback Teddy Bridgewater just smiled when he was asked about throwing the fourth-quarter jump ball TD pass to DeVante Parker in last week's victory over Cincinnati.

Parker had two TD catches in the game and has 46 catches for 743 yards and 11 TDs this season. He has 27 TD catches for his career.

"DeVante is just a playmaker," Bridgewater said. "I throw it up there and he's going to come down with it every time.

"He calls himself Spiderman and he latches on to every pass."

A LITTLE MORE HURRY UP?

U of L offensive coordinator Shawn Watson said after the Cincinnati game that the offense played better in the hurry-up formation.

So, could we see more of that in the bowl game?

Some of the players are pushing for that, including senior wide receiver Damian Copeland, who has said two games in a row the players want to speed it up.

"That's big for us, just playing faster," Copeland said. "It just feels better for us. I don't know what it is, it just feels right."

ANOTHER ORLANDO CONNECTION

Plenty of U of L players have connections to the Sunshine State. But Copeland is one of the U of L players extremely pumped about the bowl game in Orlando.

Copeland said his hometown of Bradenton, Fla., is less than two hours from Orlando and he will have "a whole lot" of family and friends at the game.

"I have family in Orlando," he said. "So, this is going to be fun."

FINISH WITH A WIN

Senior linebacker Preston Brown was asked last weekend about where the team wanted to finish the season in the rankings.

But Brown said there's only one thing the Cardinals are thinking about with the bowl game and that's a victory.

"I am not sure what will happen (with the polls)," Brown said. "But our main goal is just to go out there and get a win. We want to finish this with a win.

"That's all the matters, a win."


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