ITV Radio Replay: Guest Tony Levine"> ITV Radio Replay: Guest Tony Levine">

Michael Bush to get more opportunities

Perhaps the best talent ever to sign with Louisville, freshman Michael Bush is about to see his playing opportunity and snaps increase very soon. <P> <B>EXTRA:</B> <a href=""><B>ITV Radio Replay: Guest Tony Levine</b></a>

Every Louisville Cardinal fan knows Michael Bush is talented. Opponents know it and so does his coach Bobby Petrino.

That's why Petrino spent quite of bit of time after the loss to South Florida talking about getting his star freshman on the field more often so he can make plays and help make the U of L offense even more dangerous.

"We don't get him on the field enough," Petrino said of Bush at his weekly press conference. "When you put a Michael Bush video on the screen he always makes plays. He's a playmaker. So I've got to do a better job of getting him out there more snaps and getting him more opportunities."

Petrino realizes that putting Bush on the field more means someone currently seeing action will see his reps and playing time dimish. But the coach feels the benefits far exceed the cost.

"All that does is take it [playing time] away from somebody else but that's going to happen," Petrino said. "That's something I addressed with the staff on Sunday. I've got to do a better job of getting Michael more opportunities to run it, catch it and throw it. Because everytime the ball is near him or in his hands he makes plays."

In a limited role so far this season, that's exactly what Bush has done, make plays.

Saturday against South Florida, Bush lined up at fullback and wide receiver. He was productive with his touches too, throwing a five yard touchdown pass to Stefan LeFors in the fouth quarter and catching one pass for 24 yards and a first down.

"With that catch he made the other day," Petrino said of the one against the Bulls. "He made it look easy and then the guy hits him and bounces off. I've got to use him more."

For the season, Bush has been very impressive catching, throwing and running the ball. He's averaging 34.7 yards per reception on the season. He had a 56 yard catch and run against UTEP and scored against Syracuse one a 24 yard reeption and dive at the goal line. He has also rushed 19 times for 56 yards and completed 3-7 passes for 36 yards and one touchdown.

It's that fact, Bush's versatility that makes him special. However, Petrino hinted at his Monday afternoon press conference that the coaching staff may be settling on playing the talented athlete at one position exclusively.

"He's an unbelievable athlete," said Petrino. "I think [we'll play him] more exclusively maybe at one position than the other."

Petrino didn't speculate which position that was but don't be surprised to see #19 lined up more often than not at fullback where his running, blocking and pass catching skills would make him a dangerous threat for opposing defenses.

One thing is certain though. Michael Bush is about to see his role on this team increase and the prediction here is he'll be a big time contributor and important cog in this offense's development the rest of the season.

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