UofL FOOTBALL | Cards Talk Citrus Bowl Match-Up vs. LSU

12/29/2016 06:49 PM

The #13 Louisville Cardinals (9-3) are preparing to face the #20 LSU Tigers (7-4) in the Citrus Bowl Saturday.

Kickoff is set for 11 a.m. ET inside Orlando, Florida’s Camping World Stadium.

The game will be the first meeting between the two football programs.

UofL enters the game on a two-game losing streak, after falling to both Houston and Kentucky to close out the regular season.

Meanwhile, LSU enters the game on a 54-39 win over Texas A&M in November.

The Tigers won five of their last seven games of the season after relieving head coach Les Miles of his duties in September.

Ed Orgeron became the team’s interim head coach and has now become the program’s permanent head coach.

On Thursday, UofL defensive coordinator Todd Grantham praised Ed Orgeron for the job he has done at LSU since taking over as head coach.

“Well, because we’ve had so much time, I have looked at pretty much every game, but I’ve really emphasized the ones since he’s taken over, and I think he’s done a good job of having passion on the team,” said Grantham. “You see energy by the players. You see them doing the things that good teams do. And like I said, they’re 5-2 in those seven games, and the only two losses — you know, the Alabama game, it’s a one-possession game in the fourth quarter. They got the ball on the one-yard line against Florida, and both those teams play in the SEC Championship game. So they’re obviously a talented team. They can run the ball, and anytime you run the ball, you have the play action passes off of it. So we understand that, and we’ve just got to go play.”

Plenty of other items were discussed during Thursday’s press conferences, which featured questions for the Louisville football coordinators surrounding both the “Wakey Leaks” scandal and the alleged shootings that involved linebackers James Hearns and Henry Famurewa.

Of course, “Wakey Leaks” involved Wake Forest radio announcer Tommy Elrod, who provided or attempted to provide Demon Deacon game plan information to various opponents starting in 2014.

One of the opponents was the Louisville Cardinals this season. As a result of the scandal, UofL suspended co-offensive coordinator Lonnie Galloway from the Citrus Bowl. Chris Klenakis is now the team’s lone offensive coordinator for Saturday’s game.

“You know, we’ve got a great offensive staff and anything we do, we do as a staff,” said Klenakis. “We game plan as a staff and we lay out our practice plans and stuff. We’ve kept it right in rhythm and stride. And like I said, our staff’s done a great job in preparation.”

And finally, the Cards discussed the alleged shootings of Hearns and Famurewa, who are each listed as OUT for Saturday’s game. UofL has not officially confirmed that Hearns and Famurewa were victims of a shooting during the night of the Heisman Trophy presentation, although it has been widely reported.

“Well, first of all, when you do find the information, your heart stops a little bit because, you know, we are talking about student athletes and young men that are working to get their degree, and they have a vision of playing football and continuing their career,” said Grantham. “But fortunately for everyone involved, they’re okay. They’re going to be fine. And the most important thing is, they’re going to be able to move forward with their lives. And you always use those things — unfortunately, with the society we live in today, things happen, and it’s always an opportunity to educate guys and let the next person understand what can happen and just make sure that you’re safe as you move forward in your life. So, fortunately both guys are fine. Everybody is okay. Our thoughts and prayers, obviously, go out to all the victims that were in it. And the biggest thing now is to get those guys healthy and let them move on and live productive lives.”

Be sure to stay with cn|2 Sports for updates from Orlando. Follow us on social media, for exclusive content and a behind-the-scenes look at the Citrus Bowl.

Andrew Chernoff

Andrew is a sports anchor and sports managing editor for Spectrum News. He covers sports all across the state of Kentucky for Sports Night, which airs weeknights at 6:30 and 10:30 on Spectrum News. Andrew was a sports anchor and reporter at KFDM/KBTV in Beaumont, Texas for four years before making the move back home to the Midwest. He is originally from Carmel, Indiana and majored in broadcast journalism and political science at Syracuse University.

When he’s not on the air or in the field covering sports, you can likely find Andrew playing golf, watching IndyCar and Formula 1 races, or exploring the state of Kentucky. His favorite sport is open-wheel racing. In fact, he has not missed an Indianapolis 500 since the early 2000s.

Whether he is working sporting events or not, he always loves talking sports. He is a prolific tweeter, so if you want to stay “in the know” about sports in the Bluegrass, follow Andrew on Twitter @ADChernoff. If you have a story idea for our sports team, send it to Andrew at Andrew.Chernoff@charter.com.

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