Cards battle Bearcats in the Hall

#5 Louisville (16-1, 6-0) puts it's nation's best 15 game winning streak on the line Wednesday night against C-USA rival Cincinnati (13-5, 6-2)in a key conference matchup. The game will be televised at 7:00 on ESPN.

Cards battle Bearcats in the Hall

Date: Wednesday, February 5, 2003
Time: 7:00 pm
Site: Freedom Hall - Louisville, KY (18,865)
Television: ESPN
Radio: WHAS (840 AM)
Series History: Louisville leads 45-34
Last Meeting: Louisville defeated Cincinnati 74-71, February 27, 2002 in Freedom Hall
National Rankings:
   CINCINNATI      Not ranked
   LOUISVILLE       5th AP, 6th Coaches
Significant injuries: UC - None  U of L - None

Louisville vs. Cincinnati traditionally has been a war and this game should be no different as it matches C-USA's top offense against the leagues best defense.  Coming into the contest averaging 84.6 points per the game, the Cardinals look to establish a favorable tempo against a Cincinnati Bearcats defense allowing only 58.9 points.

The Cards enter the game with the nation's longest winning streak (15) and are coming off perhaps its strongest showing of the year, a 95-76 thrashing of the Indiana Hoosiers.

Cincinnati on the other hand has dropped it's past two games, at DePaul and against Marquette last Saturday at home.  The Bearcats are led by the talented trio of Field Williams, Jason Maxiell and Leonard Stokes with each averaging more than 11.5 points per game.

The Bearcats always play great defense and this team is no different as the Cats rank sixth in the nation in scoring defense.  However, UC lacks the intimidating presence in the middle they've enjoyed in years past with players like Kenyon Martin and Donald Little and have struggled at the offensive end, shooting just .418 from the field.

Cincinnati has proven an outstanding ball handling team however, committing the fewest turnovers per game (9.9) in the nation this season.  One of the keys of the game will be how well Cincinnati handles Louisville's relentless, full court pressure defense. 

The Cards appear to have an advantage on the glass and will need to control the defensive backboard and limit the oft errant shooting Bearcats to one shot at the offensive end.  This will be key for the Cards to establish a favorable tempo and ignite its fast break and early offense against an excellent half court defensive club like the Bearcats.

In the end, look for Louisville's depth, relentless defense and home court advantage to prevail against the slumping Bearcats, 84-68 to extend their nation's longest winning streak to 16!

STATISTICAL COMPARISON

Louisville
Statistical Category

Cincinnati

84.6
Points
67.9
65.1
Opponent Points
58.9
+19.5
Scoring Margin
+9
.484
FG %
.418
.396
Opponent FG %
.395
.370
3PT FG %
.356
.276
Opponent 3PT FG %
.340
.721
Free Throw %
.686
38.6
Rebounds
35.0
34.8
Opponent Rebounds
33.5
+3.8
Rebounding Margin
+1.5
17.6
Assists
12.7
13.7
Turnovers
9.9
5.0
Blocks
3.7

7.2

Steals

5.8

Probable Starting Lineups

#5 Louisville Cardinals (16-1, 6-0)
Pos No. Name
Ht
Wt
Yr
PPG
RPG
APG
F 2 Ellis Myles 6-8 235 Jr.
7.9
8.0
1.9
F 33 Erik Brown 6-5 205 Sr.
7.8
2.5
1.1
C 21 Marvin Stone 6-10 240 Sr.
13.3
8.0
1.5
G 5 Taquan Dean 6-3 175 Fr.
8.3
2.5
1.5
G 22 Reece Gaines 6-6 205 Sr.
18.2
2.5
5.2
Cincinnati Bearcats (13-5, 6-2)
Pos No . Name
Ht
Wt
Yr
PPG
RPG
APG
G 20 Taron Barker 6-1 200 Sr.
6.4
4.2
5.5
G 2 Field Williams 6-3 185 Jr.
13.2
2.4
1.0
F 54 Jason Maxiell 6-7 235 So.
11.3
7.0
.5
C 24 Rod Flowers 6-8 220 Jr. 3.3
2.7
.3
F 13 Leonard Stokes 6-6 200 Sr.
16.6
4.5
2.9

 

Louisville's last 5 games
 Date Opponent Result
 Sat, Jan 18 TCU W 87-74
 Wed, Jan 22 DePaul W 71-43
 Sat, Jan 25 at Tennessee W 72-69
 Wed, Jan 29 at Southern Mississippi W 94-65
 Sat, Feb 1 Indiana W 95-76
Cincinnati's last 5 games
 Date Opponent Result
 Sat, Jan 18 Tulane W 77-54
 Wed, Jan 22 at East Carolina W 59-53
 Sat, Jan 25 Charlotte W 83-79
 Wed, Jan 29 at DePaul L 52-56
 Sat, Feb 1 Marquette L 76-82

Tidbits

  • Louisville is the top scoring offense in C-USA at 84.6 point per game
  • Cincinnati is the top defense team in C-USA allowing just 58.9 points per game
  • Louisville's 15 game winning streak is the nation's longest this season
  • Cincinnati leads the nation in fewest turnovers per game at 9.9
  • Louisville Assistant Coach Mick Cronin began his coaching career at Cincinnati under Head Coach Bob Huggins

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