“ALL RISE!!! Court is now in session. The honorable Bucket Hat King LJ tha Fiasco presiding. Please be seated and come to order”

Not sure how to start this off so I will just wing it until it starts to make sense. The Cards bounced back in a big way against Virginia Tech only to come crashing down to earth days later in Tallahassee. The Cards went from playing like a veteran group to looking like a YMCA pick up game on Saturday. But with all that, this team is still in a great position to do some damage in March. Losing sucks, and moral victories are garbage as well. But losing to ranked teams in overtime will likely not hurt as much when it comes to seeding. At least I hope they wont.

The Cards are considered one of the top 16 teams in the nation. CBS held a tournament preview show hours before the game on Saturday and it projects Louisville as a 4 seed in the West region:

While we are disappointed with the way the Cards played on Saturday, you have to be happy we are in the position we are in. Last season we were clinging to a bubble that abruptly burst in early March. This season we are firmly in, and just playing for a higher seed. What a difference a staff makes.

Card fans have every right to be pissed about giving a game away on the road. But lets take a day, get over it, and then focus our attention on the Duke Blue Devils, who I consider to be the number one team in the nation despite what the polls say. Wear Black.

To the notes:


Any outbursts and you will be removed from the courtroom by Leslie (@Leslie_Seaton). I have been watching the second season of The Punisher or Netflix so I am all about mysterious women who could kick some ass. Not saying the Leslie is mysterious, but if I was in a bar and saw her beat down four guys I wouldn’t be surprised. Just know that the redheads are not to be messed with

  • When the Cards struggle they STRUG-GLE. I am not sure how to improve ball handling but I am so used to having multiple guys be able to handle pressure defense. Right now the only person I trust with the ball in his hands is CC. Cunningham, and Dwayne Sutton are literally the only two guys I trust to dribble the ball while on the court. Some guys on our team have been sloppy with the handles all year, and you have eyes so you don’t need me to say who. Can this be fixed? Absolutely. Can it be fixed this season? Highly doubt it. The scary thing is we won’t have the time to correct that issue but we do have time to fix mental errors. 23 turnovers is extremely unacceptable and had Louisville won the game I still would be concerned. The last time we had that many turnovers was against Pitt in early January and you know how that went.

  • We really have a issue with our bench play. Aside from Steven Enoch and Ryan McMahon there are no other players who would be able to contribute if needed. This is NOT a bash VJ and Darius segment so don’t start licking your chops. I am merely pointing out how Louisville is not as deep as we could potentially be. We really need consistency from those two and at this particular point of the season I think we are only down to 7 players who could really contribute to the team. VJ only played one minute of a 45 minute game. Darius took one of the most ill-advised shots of the game that didn’t even draw rim. It’s frustrating to say the least and is a glaring weakness that I am sure other teams will look to capitalize on.
  • Jordan Nwora has really improved scoring wise but I am confused as to why he won’t pass the ball in some fast break situations. It befuddles me to see him have tunnel vision several times a game. Yes, he does drive and score at times but there has been some occasions to where he doesn’t and it ends up being a bad shot or a turnover. Now that other teams are no longer clueless about his hot shooting, Jordan will have to start getting his teammates involved when his shot is not falling.
  • The EnochNess Monster was hampered with fouls on Saturday and while some may disagree I think the technical was BS. FSU was jawing and flexing the entire game and of course it’s always the last person to talk that gets punished. I am not blaming the officials completely but like in every game there were a ton of bad calls. If being in the ACC has taught us anything, its never leave the decision in the refs hands.
  • I am all for making the Ryan-Run an every game thing. McMahon followed up Monday’s personal 12-0 run against VT with another personal 9-0 run against FSU. When he is on, he is on. Now granted he will be fighting a ton of paternity suits in Blacksburg and Tallahassee but hey what can you do?

  • Starting to think the Malik Williams three from the right wing is going in EVERY time. It is really becoming automatic. Although I would love to see him in the post more I will never complain about our center making threes.
  • Make that two heartbreaking losses to FSU due to last minute turnovers. At least Mack didn’t call a pass play late.
  • Speaking of Mack, a lot was made about his halftime interaction with Allison Williams during Monday’s game against VT. Let me just say halftime interviews are so dumb. You saw the first half, you can see what is going wrong so why make the coach explain it? Secondly, if I am getting my ass kicked the last thing I want to do is explain why my team is losing when I need to be in the locker room coaching them. With that being said, the “Mack shrug” was born:

Mack apologized to Allison after the game and she admitted it wasn’t a big deal. Besides, she is only doing her job and while it may not be ideal to kick a hornets nest we understand that is how reporters make a living. So after catching heat on Monday, it was only right that Mack made up for it with the now infamous “Mack hug”:

That our coach yall……..

  • Tuesday’s game against Duke is a BLACKOUT game. That means all Louisville fans should wear black. I know that is a lot for some of you to stomach but I am trying to save you from appearing on the “You had one job” cam. Get a black t-shirt, dress shirt, sweater, blouse, hoody, parka, turtleneck, tank top, robe, whatever. Just make sure its black. It really isn’t that hard. If you give a ticket to another Louisville fan, make sure they know to wear black. If you choose to paint your body black, don’t paint your face black. Blackface is bad, and racist okay……leave that sort of thing to the state of Virginia. Regardless the Louisville crowd is going to look like a checkerboard on Tuesday night because directions are hard.
  • If you need tickets, Planet Fitness has them for $30. Yes you will be in the 300 level seats but you will be in the building. There were a ton of seats in the upper deck for the UNC game so I expect there to still be seats available to Duke. Call around and check before you go though to make sure they still have some tickets remaining.


The court will now be opened for questioning:

Jimmy (@jrnall) LJ, long-time reader here. If you got to spend a 18-hour car ride with your favorite UK fan, who would you pick: me, @btcoop71 or @JPaulYall?

First there is no such thing as a favorite UK fan. I hate all of you equally. Secondly I would have all three of you strap in and we will all do a Thelma and Louise off the second street bridge. Cards can fly, let see you guys use one of those nine lives.

EisedebCard (@eisedeb) Longtime listener first time caller, ode to Bob and Tom…it’s a Black out Tuesday, so what % of fans will show up in either red or white?

Sad to say it but 70% will wear black. 20% will come in red and white. 5% will wear green, purple, or orange, and the other 5% will either be Duke or UK fans. I am really tired of the color themed games mainly because we are on a losing streak in them. I will change my stance if we win.

(@kevinw502) What’s your favorite lotion?

It used to be Jergen’s cherry almond for the win but as I got older the smell became intolerable. Nowadays the BHK uses Eucerin which is fragrance-free and keeps me from walking around looking like Ashy Larry from the Chappelle show. It keeps my skin hydrated in this brutal winter and prevents my legs and arms from looking like I had a MMA fight with a bag of flour. Thanks for asking.

Crazy Cardinal (@Terryembry14) Do you think we need a “passes” coach? A person 24 hours a day that just throws the ball at your face when you are not looking. You know dodgeball style.

If that would help cut down on turnovers then I am all for it. Just don’t have them out on 264 dodging rush hour traffic.

iRepLouisville24/7 (@replouisville) Do you think ESPN’s favorite player will have a good game against us?

Zion Williamson is going to do what he does. My concern is stopping RJ Barrett and Cam Reddish. Let Zion dunk his wrists off but you CANNOT let all three go off. It’s a tall task for a team who has struggled against bigger teams this season, but it’s our only hope of getting a W on Tuesday. Luckily I have tickets so I won’t have to listen to Dick Vitale salivate over Duke, Kansas, UNC or whoever else he chooses to fixate on during the game. To answer your question though, yes, Zion is going to Zion.

Eathy Clark (@eathyuofl): Whats a new or unpopular Bourbon you like or would recommend for Tuesday nights ESPN love/jerk fest with Duke? Gotta get drunk or else I may go insane .

It’s a Tuesday night game tipping off at 9pm. I am sure you have to work the next day. Do yourself a favor and mute the TV, turn on Paul Rogers and Bob Valvano, and enjoy. Pause your DVR for about 10 secs and it should sync up with the radio feed. Now you have a Cardinal broadcast to go along with a Cardinal game. You’re welcome.

Matty not so nice (@thetruefeny_t): What superpower would you want?

Hmm. Well most people would want to fly or be invincible I think I will keep it simple. I would want to cure cancer, AIDS, paralysis , and anything else we do not have a cure for with one fist bump. That would be awesome to have someone clinging to life and I come in and remove all illness by bumping knuckles. Bump a hand and give someone the use of their limbs again. But the bad side of that is I would then have a huge target on my back because I would be taking down all the major drug corporations who are getting rich on providing drugs for people who are affected. As Chris Rock said in a comedy special years ago, “the money isn’t in the cure, it’s in the comeback”. The CIA would kill me immediately.

Cardinal Pride (@neeley_rob): Unforced turnovers. Limit those before March and a 16 run is simple. Question I have is ceiling. Realistically, what is our ceiling? 20-22 wins before NCAA’s begin?

I think we finish the regular season 22-10, maybe 23-9 if we are lucky. We may head into the ACC tournament with either a single bye or the double bye. We have seven games left to figure this out but the Cards really cannot afford to lose to teams like Notre Dame, Boston College, Clemson or even Syracuse.


Person(s) or things who earned front row seats to the Grammy’s:

  • Dwayne Sutton
  • Ryan McMahon scoring runs
  • Coach Mack halftime interviews, shrugs, and hugs
  • 70 degree days in February
  • Louisville Football recruiting
  • “Big Mouth” Valentine’s day specials
  • The Louisville Women’s team. 23-1 and not done yet.
  • Malik Williams three’s
  • Indiana losing streaks starting up again

Person(s) or things who earned front row seats to a Post Malone poetry reading:

  • FSU trash talk
  • Buzz Williams sweating
  • Black Out games
  • Liam Neeson
  • The entire state of Virginia
  • The Walking Dead (please just end the show already, your best years are behind you)
  • Dick Vitale
  • Katina Powell mugshots
  • Matt McGavic remains on this list.


And in closing , the dreaded four game gauntlet against ranked teams comes to a end tomorrow night. Historically, Louisville has gone 2-2 the previous two times we have had similar stretches. I am not saying we will beat Duke, I am just hoping that history once again is on our side and we can make up for the FSU debacle..

7 games left. We have to find a way to go 5-2 or better to stay within the top 16 seeds in my opinion. Louisville is in the tournament unless they collapse and drop all 7 which I don’t see happening. At least I hope it doesn’t.

Buckle up folks, it’s gonna be a wild finish.

Oh yeah, wear black.

Be cool in this hot city…..but wear black.

Court adjourned (bangs gavel)

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LJ Nesbitt

The BHK. Writer for thecrunchzone.com , 1/2 of the TCZ Podcast. Surviving in the great city of Louisville, in the not so great state of KY. Loui$ville KY thecrunchzone.com

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