Sunday, September 19, 2010

Cards drop a close one in Corvalis

If anyone were to ask me (and several people did) how I thought the Louisville Cardinals would fare this weekend out in Corvalis to take on the Beavers (haha) of Oregon State, they would have gotten a grin from me, followed by me saying we were going to get taken to the woodshed--or something similar but maybe less corny and more profane.

I tuned in today to our local WBKI in STANDARD DEF (gag) to watch the Cards battle the Beavers (haha again), but what I saw left me in shock and awe. Louisville got the kickoff and promptly drove down the field without issue to the Oregon State 1, where they were shut out and stopped from scoring (I'd have kicked a field goal to take the lead, but whatever). After they stopped Oregon State on a 3 and out series, they drove right back down the field and just as it looked like Adam "Abe" Froman was scampering in for a touchdown, the ball was punched out at the goal line and went out of bounds through the endzone for a touchback, Beavers ball (sorry, I have to laugh every time I say, read, or hear the word "Beaver"). I was literally about to jump through my TV with fury that we should have two scores on the board.

It was right about this time that it hit me--I hadn't been this jacked up to watch my Cards play in over 2 years. I remembered suddenly all the drunken and sober times at Papa Johns in what seemed like ages ago, being pumped up to watch Louisville lay a beatdown on anyone who came to town, including this very Oregon State team that the Cards thrashed 61-10 just a few short seasons ago. I then remembered being on my couch in KragCooper's 2nd term, watching Rutgers pound the life out of the Cards, and no one on the field, or even in my living room noticing. I watched the game with total apathy, Kragthorpe had sucked the passion for sports from my soul.

As I watched all game, it was a great feeling to be screaming, jumping up and down, and having anyone in my house a little freaked out to be there due to my enthusiasm. Even when down 21 and my friend said, "dude, we probably should change the channel so you can remember how good the first half was," I laughed and told him I wanted to watch every second--beatdown or not. Louisville showed heart that I hadn't seen from the team in over 3 years. They fought back until the last second of the game when an untimely interception by the Sausage King himself sounded the end of the game.

It was heartbreaking, but it almost felt good to be that heartbroken. Say what you want about how bad this team is, or how you don't think Charlie Strong is going to get it done (just like BoogieWoogie proclaims), but like it or not, this team has HEART and plays with passion. If strong can get that kind of play out of the talent level that this team has, I am absolutely excited about the years to come. This isn't some kind of "moral victory" today, this loss hurt, and it hurt bad...but for me, it was nice to have any kind of feeling again.

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