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Louisville QB Brohm shines in bowl, mulls return

MIAMI -- Brian Brohm saved his best for when Louisville
needed it most.

The Louisville quarterback suffered through three quarters of
dropped passes, poor throws and missed opportunities against No. 15
Wake Forest in the Orange Bowl on Tuesday night.

Yet with the Cardinals' first Bowl Championship Series game on
the line, the hometown kid delivered on the promise he made to the
Cardinals when he chose to stay home rather than head to Notre
Dame.

Brohm completed 24 of 34 passes for 311 yards -- the third-most
in Orange Bowl history -- and was spectacular in the fourth quarter
to lead Louisville to a 24-13 victory. It's a win that could propel
the Cardinals into the national championship hunt next season, and
Brohm into the Heisman Trophy race if he chooses to return for his
senior year.

"It looks very appealing right now. It does," said Brohm, who
was named the game's Most Valuable Player. "We've got a great team
coming back and it would be very hard to pass that up."

If the Orange Bowl was his final bow at Louisville, Brohm made
sure it was special. With the Cardinals trailing by three early in
the fourth quarter, he was nearly perfect over Louisville's next
two drives.

Brohm completed 9 of 11 passes for 124 yards in the final
period, providing the Cardinals with the crispness they lacked over
the first three quarters.

Playing with the cool efficiency that's highlighted his career,
Brohm guided Louisville on an 81-yard drive that gave the Cardinals
a 17-13 lead, and followed it with a 72-yard march that ended with
an 18-yard touchdown run by Brock Bolen. The score put an
exclamation point on Louisville's most significant win in program
history.

"He just has a knack for the game," receiver Harry Douglas
said of Brohm. "Some guys are just born with it, and he's one of
them."

Brohm said he'll meet with his family and gauge the interest
from NFL personnel before making his decision on whether to play
again for Louisville. But the Cardinals return a majority of
starters on both sides of the ball and could have injured running
back Michael Bush back next year. Bush broke his right leg in the
first game of the year and hasn't played since.

Brohm, whose older brothers Jeff and Greg and father Oscar all
played at Louisville, has plenty of reason to return. But with some
NFL experts predicting him to be a high draft pick, the lure of the
pros may be too tempting.

"It'll be exciting to see what he does and hopefully he'll come
back because I like our chances with him back there," said center
Eric Wood.

So do the Louisville fans. The thousands at Dolphins Stadium
chanted "one more year" to Brohm as he ran off the field.