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Most fans and media types picked Florida State to beat Louisville last week. Most expected the Cardinals to play a tight hard-fought game, but still come up short in Tallahassee. What they didn’t expect was the lack of effort shown by the defense in the second half after leading 7 – 6 at the half. Missed tackles and blown assignments drew the ire of head coach Bobby Petrino in the 41 – 21 loss to the Seminoles.
What a difference a week makes. U of L completely imposed their will on defense against Boston College on Saturday. There would be few missed tackles and blown assignments as the Cardinals defeated the Eagles 17 – 14 to improve to 3 – 4 on the season.
Louisville’s defense held Boston College to a measly 79 total yards of offense and only 4 first downs. The Eagles could muster only one third down conversion in 14 attempts.
Petrino was very pleased with the defensive effort, “The thing I’m most pleased with is how our defense came back. We worked extremely hard all week. They came out and played fast and physical. We had a really good plan for our defensive staff and the kids executed – we put a lot of pressure on them.”
The only points came as a result of the inefficiency of the U of L offense. Trailing 14 – 0, the offense doing absolutely nothing, the Eagles blocked a Louisville punt and returned it 12 yards for a touchdown. Then late in the third quarter the Eagles recovered a Louisville fumble and then quickly converted it into a touchdown to cut the Cardinals’ lead to three.
Trevon Young was the star of the day for the Cardinals leading the way with three huge sacks. He along with a host of Cardinals were in the Eagles’ backfield the entire game.
Coach Petrino compared what Young is doing to what Louisville great Elvis Dumervil did for the Cardinals. Petrino said, “He’s doing a real nice job for us. He’s extremely quick. He’s doing a good job of anticipating the snap and working hard in the video room to give him some tips, much like Elvis (Dumervil) used to do. Elvis used to study the quarterback, used to study the center. They’ll have him get off and get on the edge. I’m really proud of him. I think he’s done a great job for us and really has been our best edge rusher.”
The solid play of the defense helped offset four Louisville turnovers. Lamar Jackson injured his ankle early in the game, but stayed in despite obvious pain. Boston College neutralized his running ability, limiting him to only 15 yards on 14 carries. He did throw for 230 yards, but had two interceptions.
Reggie Bonnafon is proving too hard to take off of the field. He led the Cardinals with 56 yards rushing on 10 carries and also caught two passes for 18 yards.
Louisville travels next to North Carolina to face the Demon Deacons for a Friday night ESPN2 tilt on the Oct. 30.