After six weeks of College Football, Charlie Strong and the Louisville Cardinals one of the sixteen teams that are still unbeaten. So far so good for Louisville, but at this point, there is still a lot to be learned about this team. Here are some things that we do know after five games.
Teddy Bridgewater is as good as advertised: Teddy’s last two games weren’t exactly his best performances, but overall he has been very impressive so far in 2012. We heard all about his development on the offseason and he’s lived up to every bit of the hype. The talk being a potential Heisman candidate has slightly died down in recent weeks, but if Teddy plays the way he did in the first three games for Louisville, don’t be surprised if he is mentioned again.
Dexter Heyman’s leadership on defense is missed: Talent isn’t the issue for this year’s Louisville defense. Charlie Strong and Vance Bedford return quite a bit of key players from last season, but the one player that is truly missed is Dexter Heyman. Not only was Heyman one of Louisville’s leading tacklers last season, he was the leader on defense. Charlie Strong is still waiting for that vocal leader to emerge in 2012.
Moving Senorise Perry to running back was a good decision: Jeremy Wright and Dominique Brown had shown us in the past that they are capable running backs, but Senorise Perry was a guy that didn’t have much experience at all as a ball carrier. In six games this season not only has Perry shown that he is more than capable at being the starting running back, but he may in fact be the best one of them all. Not to take anything away from Wright who is playing very well this season, but Perry has shown some big time play making ability this season.
This team plays to the level of their competition: With seven games still remaining on the schedule, things could change, but up to this point, I think it’s safe to say that Louisville has played to the level of their competition this year. The same thing happened last year, but the only difference in 2012 is that this team now has the confidence to win games that they would have lost last season. Florida International and Southern Miss are both games that Louisville could have lost.
Need a kicker that can get the kickoff’s to the end zone: Maybe I’m the only one that notices it, but about 90% of the time when Louisville kicks off, the ball doesn’t make it to the end zone, which has led to poor starting field position for the defense. Maybe it’s a strategic move by the coaching staff to not give the return team the option to take the touchback, but considering the specials teams coverage on kickoffs, starting on the 20-yard-line would be an improvement.