Buchanan recorded his second consecutive start on Thursday night against Pittsburgh and had his biggest outing yet, recording five tackles – a career high – and a pass break up.
"As for starting, Coach Whitt told us that we have to compete each week to see who earns the start," Buchanan said following Louisville's 42-20 win. "We know Rod Council is going to be there and I have working hard in practice, so Coach Whitt told me that I earned it."
Buchanan has played in five games at corner and on special teams, recording 12 stops this year. However, while his big-play resume is a work in progress, Buchanan added one to his personal list when the visiting Panthers faced a fourth and five play from the Cardinals 37-yard line midway through the third quarter. Buchanan broke up a Tyler Palko pass intended for Greg Lee and helped the Cardinal defense continue to shut out Pittsburgh during the second half.
"That was a big play for us because it put our offense back on the field," Buchanan explained. "We all wanted to make the stop and I was able to get my hand on the ball."
Making his first start at home in front of a Papa John's Cardinal Stadium record-crowd of 42,692, Buchanan said the atmosphere for the Thursday night ESPN showdown with Pittsburgh is one of the reasons he chose to follow his brother's – former Louisville All-American Ray Buchanan – footsteps and wear the red and black.
"This is why I came here," he said, adding that he enjoyed the new black uniforms. "This is huge. The fans were really into, playing under the lights for ESPN on Thursday night – this was exciting. I hope we keep these uniforms because we play good in them."