Quick ready to take next step for Cards

Cardinal Authority is counting down the days until the University of Louisville football team starts the season on Sept. 5 against Auburn in the Chick-Fil-A Classic at the Georgia Dome. It's 98 days until the season begins and we look at junior wide receiver James Quick and his hope to be a leader for the Cardinals' on offense.

The highest ranked recruit ever signed by the University of Louisville football team, wide receiver James Quick has never fully lived up to his billing in two seasons with the Cardinals.

But that could happen this fall.

With Quick being moved to the inside slot position and the wide receiver group being decimated by graduation, the former Trinity High School star has the chance to step into a major role for the Cardinals.

Quick had what U of L offensive coordinator Garrick McGee termed as a "really, really good" spring and he should be one of the main go-to targets for the Cardinals' quarterbacks this fall.

"James had a really good spring for us, kind of moving him around and playing him at different spots and he's been through how we practice and been through how we go about our business," U of L coach Bobby Petrino said. "So he was mentally in better physical condition than the other guys. He had a really good spring."

As a freshman, Quick had just six catches for 73 yards and scored his only touchdown on a blocked punt return against Central Florida. He was more involved as a sophomore but did get into some off the field troubles prior to last season.

Quick did miss the Boston College game because of a suspension, but played in 12 games and was the third-leading receiver on the team. He finished with 36 receptions for 566 yards and three TDs.

"I feel like I became a better player and a better receiver this spring," Quick said. "I feel like I've had to mature and I've learned more. I'm better physically and mentally on the field."

In the spring game, Quick had seven catches for 127 yards.

Quick said playing in the slot "is a lot more fun" than playing in the outside because with his speed he can get some mismatches. He spoke several times to former U of L receiver Eli Rogers about the slot position.

"It's all about technique," he said. "I'm just trying to get better and it's coming easier as I go along. I just have to keep working and trust my coaches. I'm trying to do all the right things."

Petrino said he was pleased with his receiving group, despite losing first-round NFL Draft pick DeVante Parker and several other key receivers, off last year's team. And Quick said he feels like the talent is there.

"It's going to be difficult to replace all of the talent we had," Quick said. "But we have to realize that we still have a lot of talent. We have a lot of guys who can make plays."


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