The Running-Clock Controversy:

At some point midway through the third quarter, the clock began to run and didn’t stop during the incompletions, out of bounds, or first downs. Their were stoppage’s between the TV timeouts and any timeouts that were called on the field but other than that, nothing. Team gets a first down, the clock kept running; One team went out of bounds, the same thing occurred. In all fairness, it may have been for the best for the Panthers as they trailed by 58 at the end of the third quarter. Louisville was leading the Panthers in a game they had no chance of winning and for Louisville, the last thing you want is an injury to a player when the outcome is no longer in doubt.

Sounds like the right thing to do, right? One problem though. Drew Deener reportedly spoke with the Head AAC Official who said that “teams are not allowed to have a running clock”. However, I spoke to one linesman following the game who told me something a bit different.

“It was a mutual decision. I don’t know how it happened but it was a mutual decision,” He noted. “I’m sure they were happy about it.”

Louisville Head Coach Charlie Strong and Florida International Head Coach Ron Turner also had differences of opinions as well.

“I don’t know anything about a running clock,” Turner said. “I just thought they were setting (the ball) quick. I did notice it was going quicker. First of all, I don’t have the authority to request it. I wish I had the authority. I’m not saying I wouldn’t have, but I didn’t request it.”

Ron Turner did recall a situation in which he requested it earlier in his Coaching Career at San Jose State. However, that was under a different set of circumstances. In that game, Turner’s team was leading 46-7, he requested it and it was granted.

Charlie Strong sees this situation a little differently.

“What happened was that both coaches talked and we said ‘lets get out of here’,” Strong explained following the 72-0 victory. “It was just mutually agreed upon.”

Michaelee Harris finds In-Zone For First Time in Two Years:

Today was quite a special day for Michaelee Harris. A promising RS Junior from Miami, FL and Northwestern High School, he’s been hampered by injuries his whole career at Louisville. I don’t have to dive into the severity of each injury at Louisville because it’s been well-documented, but he’s amassed two ACL tears at Louisville, his latest kept him off the field the whole 2012 season.

Today, Harris was able to score a touchdown for the first time since November 21, 2011. After the game, emotion overwhelmed him.

“It was a great feeling,” Harris said following the game. “The guys know how hard I worked and everything I’ve been through, they wanted to see me get in. I’m just glad everybody got behind me and God was able to give me another opportunity.”

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Last year, when the Cardinals traveled to Miami to take on Florida International, Michaelee Harris was unable to play. In turn, Harris was unable to play against the more than ten Northwestern High School alums that make up the Panthers team. This year, he was able to do that for the second time.

“It felt good [to play against those guys],” Harris noted. “The last team I played against them, I scored against them. TY [Hilton] had a big game and we lost. So it felt great to finally get a touchdown and also get the win.”

Louisville Defense Breaks Records:

After a sub par season for the defense last year, the Louisville Defense has been one of the best in the Country. They’ve given 27 points in four games, ranking them in the Top 25 in nearly every statistical defensive category. Today, the Cardinals made history. They broke the previous record of Total Offense allowed of 58 in 1990. That team went on to win the Fiesta Bowl against Alabama.  Today, the Panthers were only able to gain 32 yards of Total Offense.

“It’s just a reflection of how hard we work, day in and day out,” DT Brandon Dunn said following the game. “We take pride and how hard we work. We take pride in everything we do. We take pride in going to class. We take pride in coming to Dinner on time. We take pride in every little detail of this program. It doesn’t surprise me that the defense has come out here and played a great game today.”

Louisville also had another impressive accomplishment today. They claimed their first shut out since a 26-0 win over Connecticut in 2010 and also the third of the Charlie Strong tenure.

“Before the season even started, we said we wanted to shut out everyone we played,” DE Marcus Smith explained. “Having the shut out today really means a lot to us, to the team, to the Coaches and to the program.”

My Take:

It’s clear that Florida International is a bad football team. They haven’t won a game and have lost each by double-digits.  That was evident today. We won’t take much from this game, considering the caliber of team that the Panthers are. Nevertheless, it’s nice to see a team that was favored so heavily, go out and take care of business.

Lastly, Charles Gaines, ladies and Gentlemen.

BUtICytCUAI5dVb.jpg large                                  Courtesy of Louisville Sports Live.

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Chris Hatfield

Residing in Louisville, KY (via Bardstown, KY). I write things about Louisville Sports. Sometimes you'll like them. Follow me @_ChrisHatfield Email me at chatfield60@gmail.com

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