Cards begin practice in Orlando

The University of Louisville football team practiced for the first time in Orlando on Monday, preparing for Saturday's Russell Athletic Bowl against Miami, Fla. Here are a few comments from the Cardinals.

The University of Louisville football team started its bowl preparations on Monday in Orlando, Fla., for the Russell Athletic Bowl on Saturday when the Cardinals face Miami, Fla.

The Cardinals practiced at First Academy under sunny skies and a temperature around 80 in shorts and shoulder pads.

U of L will continue to practice up until game day at First Academy. The Cardinals also went to Universal Studios on Monday.

Here are a few comments from day one:

Charlie Strong, U of L head coach

"We are in game preparation, so we were focusing on first and 10 and play action. We have been practicing for a week now. It's all about the game and the approach to the game. We just have to be sharp and focus on our keys and responsibilities."

"If you look at them offensively, they are a good football team. They have a very strong offensive line. Their wide receivers can really run and the quarterback does a good job of managing the offense. Defensively, they don't give up the big play, and they will make you earn everything you get."

Teddy Bridgewater, U of L QB

"Every game we have the mindset that we will take what the defense gives us. That is how we are going to approach this game. We have studied them, but we aren't going to just go out there fishing. We are going to have a good game plan. We are going to operate and try to nickel and dime them. There are plenty of opportunities out there for us and we will see how we can take advantage of those opportunities."

"They are fast and very physical. They have a ton of playmakers on defense. They are well-assigned and extremely well-coached."

"No, not at all. I'm treating this game like any other game. No game is bigger than the next game. I go into every game with the same mindset of executing our offense, managing the offense, and taking what the defense gives us."

"It was a huge wow factor once I heard we were playing the University of Miami because I am from Miami. I grew up watching the Hurricanes, for Florida State, Florida, all the Florida schools. It was very shocking. We do have the mindset that this is a big game because they are on our schedule next season. We are just going to treat it like any other game."

"I do know that after this game I have a big decision to make. There are things that are going to factor into that decision such as my personal goals and team goals. After this game I will evaluate everything and go from there."

"Just finishing something that I started and continue to be out there with guys I grew up with like Michaelee Harris, Eli Rogers and Jermaine Reve. The relationship I have with those guys is a special bond."

"Just fulfilling a dream that I've had since I've been a child. I can make an impact on the city and the area that I from, and be a living testament to those who are trying to chase their dreams and their goals. If I can do it, then they can do it also."

"Of course I do. I feel that I'm ready, but I also feel that I'm not. It can go either way. You always have areas that you can improve. Like I said, after this game I will just evaluate everything."

"Just the little things. For one, I feel I can get bigger. I'm not as heavy as I was last year, but I can attribute to my mouth surgery. I feel that I can easily gain weight back, as I am in the process of gaining it back. I'm down about 10 pounds. It didn't feel different, but at the same time it did from a durability standpoint, being able to withstand a long season. There wasn't a negative effect, but if I was 10 pounds heavier that I could have more zip on my throws."

Calvin Pryor, U of L safety

"We have to key on Stacy Coley. He has speed. We have to slow him down and make him do something he doesn't normally do."

"No, we haven't. To be honest, this is probably the best offense we have faced since I've been at the University of Louisville. They have big play-makers in the quarterback and running back position, and even the tight end gets the ball and can make things happen with it. We just have to be sound and read our keys and make plays on the ball."

"This is something I look forward too. I just want the best. I'm a competitor and when you compete it brings out the best in you. When I line up against those guys, I fully be fully confident when we line up Saturday night, and we will see what happens."

"This would be a great win, coming off the Sugar Bowl win last year, and then having a chance to play Miami. If we can win, it would be a stepping stone for coach Strong and the program as we head into the ACC."

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