2015-16 Football Previews – (ACC) – Cardinals
Louisville is a basketball school and this is likely never going to change. They had things going pretty well when Bobby Petrino 1.0 was in charge and now that he is back they are looking to be a factor again, this time in the ACC.
NCAA Football Gambling Lines
ACC 2015-2016 College Football Preview – Louisville Cardinals:
Head Coach: Bobby Petrino
2014 Record: 9-4
Odds to win ACC: +900
Win Total: 7.5
That is not to knock Charlie Strong and the work he did before he left for Texas because Petrino has been a big beneficiary. The real question is where might this program be had Petrino not left for the NFL when it is was at its peak.
Heading into this season I think Louisville can be pretty good. They are in a division with Florida State and Clemson but both of those programs are down this season compared to recent performances.
If they can get a split of those two games than they have a chance to really be in the race and maybe even steal a spot in the ACC title game.
Petrino’s deal has always been offense but the legacy of Strong’s defensive mindset is still in place making this a very balanced team.
I have every confidence that Petrino will put together a competent offense but right now the defense is miles ahead. The Cardinals have become a safe haven for problem players which has augmented their talent base on the defensive side of the ball.
Devonte Fields was a dynamic force at TCU and if his head is on straight he could be the defensive player of the year in the ACC this season.
He is joined by a number of upperclassmen in the front seven that could comprise the best defense in the conference, or at least the division. On offense the only area that is not in question is running back.
They have a nice productive group led by pounder Brandon Radcliff.
Petrino has a great track record developing quarterbacks but right now he does not have a confirmed starter.
I liked what I saw last season from Reggie Bonnafon but until someone earns the job and runs with it is is a question mark. Not making matters any better is the fact that the offensive line is making wholesale changes and as is the receiving corps that lost its top contributor from a year ago.
On defense the Cardinals have made a habit of forcing turnovers.
Even though their defensive front should be very disruptive odds are their secondary will have four new starters, with three of them being sophomores.
If that unit does not gel quickly they are going to find it harder to stop drives and set up their offense with good field position.
There has definitely been a pecking order in the ACC of late.
It starts with FSU, follows with Clemson and then there is everybody else. I think the Cardinals, after getting their feet wet last year are definitely in the upper tier right now.
This is a team that has players on both sides of the football and a coach that has won everywhere he has been (save the NFL).
I see no reason why they can’t be the kind of team that is really, really good once a recruiting cycle and pretty good the rest of the time.
I will be looking to play them in an underdog role at Auburn and hope they lose so I can back them again at home against Houston. I like their chances of knocking off Clemson to start conference play a lot and if they do all they have to do is win the games they are supposed to have another really good season.
Don’t sleep on this team, especially in any game they are an underdog.
The offense might struggle early but in the last month you are going to want to bet some overs as it improves and the competition lightens after a trip to Florida State.
September 5 – Auburn (in Atlanta)
September 12 – Houston
September 17 – Clemson
September 26 – Samford
October 3 – @ NC State
October 17 – @ Florida State
October 24 – Boston College
October 30 – @ Wake Forest
November 7 – Syracuse
November 14 – Virginia
November 21 – @ Pitt
November 28 – @ Kentucky
The 2015 College futures betting season is here in full force! If you like to bet on NCAA football, you are in the best possible place for online betting. CappersPicks.com has NCAAF odds up on a ton of futures, and you will also find College football lines up for early games as well.