Louisville defense looking to improve its play against the run

The Cardinals defense allowed over 200 yards of rushing a game and defensive coordinator Todd Grantham discussed the areas that need immediate improvement.

It's no secret, the Louisville defense must improve its rush defense for the team to rebound successfully from an 0-3 start.

The Cardinals currently rank No. 99 out of 127 programs in stopping the run.  Opponents have been banging away at the U of L defense to the tune of 206 yards a game.  Through three games, opponents have also attacked the Louisville defense on the ground at a pretty high rate.  Of those 127 FBS programs, only 12 have seen opponents have more rushing attempts than the 138 the Cardinals have faced.

"Right now, during the course of the game it is 46 runs and 28 passes, so we've got to find a way to flip that," said Grantham.

To change the trend, which has teams averaging 4.5 yards per attempt, the Cardinals need improve their tackling upon initial impact and limit short yardage situations.

"We've got to finish on the ball carrier," he said. "Second and eight can not become a second and five because they push the pile forward."

Grantham also wants to see more consistent penetration from his defense.

"We need to create a few more tackles for losses and get people behind the sticks," he continued. "First down is always the most important down because it dictates second and third down."

Grantham also stressed that reducing total number of plays and getting the defense off the field quickly is a key to success.

"Our players understand that and they are working hard," he said.


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