Getty Images/Andy Lyons
I know it’s the middle of the season, but I’ve decided to start a weekly post on my thoughts of the Louisville game from that week, as well as some big picture notes.
The closest thing to Duke’s offense has to be dental surgery. Painful and slow. But, a win is a win and right now, that’s all Louisville needs to do. All the following notes are in order of the game, so it should be easy to follow along.
- Papa John. What an asshole. Gave out free trash pizza though.
- Lamar had one of the best pass fakes ever. Tucked the ball and completely sold the “I gave the ball to the running back and now I’m chillin” look after. Only the end wasn’t fooled, and unfortunately Lamar overthrew the receiver. But it was a RIDICULOUS fake.
- Again, ridiculous play. Lamar’s pass to Seth Dawkins down the middle of the field was on a rope, thrown off his back foot, all while getting hit by a defender. Lamar is special, but more on that later.
- Brandon Radcliffe had a great first half (and game, fumble aside). He showed great vision, power, and patience.
- Duke’s defense was the first defense to really limit the offense. Clemson’s offense was forced to play with us because their defense was letting Lamar do Lamar things after the chokehold from hell.
- Daww. Engagement.
- Jaire Alexander continues to impress on special teams. Not entirely sure why people keep kicking to him.
- If you had told me before the game that a skill position player would score an 80 yard touchdown, Jeremy Smith probably would have been the last guy on my list. Even below the backups and freshmen. The run came on a blitz, which took a lot of defenders out of it, but man, it was crazy.
- This was definitely Lamar’s most inaccurate game. He was over and under throwing the receivers and struggled on a communication with a couple routes with the receivers. That being said, I thought it was his most disciplined game. He took what was given to him and didn’t make the stupid decisions many true sophomore quarterbacks make.
- There were several plays that proved to me that Lamar is the most elusive man in sports. The way he gets away from defenders is something I can’t recall seeing. It’s insane.
- Duke’s offensive playbook is 7 plays. Read option (always to the running back), hand off to the running back, rollout throw on third down ONLY, punt, field goal, quarterback punt, and quarterback fake punt. That’s it.
- Lamar learned from the Clemson game. There was a read option where the defender came to blow him up after the handoff to the running back, and Lamar spun away from the contact. It was one of his smartest moments of the game.
- We have no kicker. Where’s John Wallace when you need him?
- The defense played a tremendous game. They were asked to maintain their poise and stamina while being on the field for 15 minutes longer, defending the same 3 plays all game. Huge credit to Grantham for his work with the defense.
- I felt like Cutcliffe might have given the rest of the country the blueprint to beating this team. We had more talent, and that won out. But if a more talented team takes that plan, Louisville could be in trouble.
- I feel bad for #31. My immediate thought went back to the 2005 Rutgers game with William Gay. It wasn’t such a black and white call as then, but it was similar. I never wish that on any kid. We got lucky.
Additionally, we have a handful of doomsday fans in the fanbase. “Lamar’s Heisman is gone” and “We lost all hope at the playoffs” were things that I saw online. Firstly, we played on Friday before basically everyone else. Secondly, Lamar finished with over 300 yards and 3 touchdowns. Ask a normal quarterback if that’s a game he’d take. And lastly, as seen in the Ohio State and Clemson games, anyone can be beaten on any day. Best thing that can happen for us is for Washington to lose, Ohio State and/or Michigan to lose a game before they play at the end of the season, and if somebody could knock off Alabama that would be great.
Most importantly, and firstly, we have to win our games. NC State, you’re next.