There was a lot of optimism surrounding Louisville's offense this season with one of the better wideouts in the nation, senior DeVante Parker, returning after a stellar junior campaign in the American Athletic Conference. However, Parker suffered a foot injury in one of the team's final preseason practices that will keep him out for 6-8 weeks.
The Cardinals will miss him. Parker's 12 receiving TD last season rank 1st among returning ACC wide receivers and 5th in the FBS. Meanwhile, his 16.1 yards per catch rank 2nd among returning ACC wideouts.
In a League of his Own - DeVante Parker - Ranks Among Returning ACC WR
Yds per rec
*5th in FBS
* Louisville and Miami: will open this season after ending last season (Cardinals def. Hurricanes 36-9 in Russell Athletic Bowl)
* Louisville: 1st season in ACC (7-4 vs ACC teams over last 10 years); won last 2 vs Miami, outscoring them 67-16
* Louisville: coming off back-to-back 11-win seasons for 1st time in school history (Miami hasn't had a 10-win season since 2003)
* Louisville: 4th in FBS in total defense last 2 seasons (296.4 YPG); Miami ranks 104th in FBS in total defense (455.2 YPG) over same span
* Will Gardner (LOU): went 32-of-37 passing for 542 yards, 4 TD in Louisville spring game
* DeVante Parker (LOU): out with foot injury (12 rec TD last season leads all returning ACC receivers); 16.1 yds per reception is 2nd-most among returning ACC receivers
* Duke Johnson (MIA): 115.0 rush ypg last season (most among returning ACC running backs, 4th-most in FBS)
* Miami: went 2-4 in final 6 games after starting season 7-0
* 10 of Miami's 11 FBS opponents played in a bowl game last season
* Miami: must replace WR Allen Hurns, who set the school's single-season record with 1,162 rec yds last season
Corvin Lamb's 97-yard kickoff return TD was the longest for Louisville since Nov. 19, 2011 when Adrian Bushell had a 100-yarder in a win at Connecticut.
Miami (FL): 0-6 on 3rd down in 1st half at Louisville... Hurricanes went 0-7 on 3rd down in 1st half of Russell Athletic Bowl vs Louisville last season (lost 36-9)
Louisville looking to win its 4th straight debut game as a member of a new conference, all in the last 20 years.
Louisville in Conference Debuts - Since FBS/FCS Split in 1978
* Independent from 1978-1995
Different circumstances for sure, but Louisville note to keep in mind...
The Cardinals scored touchdowns on their 1st 6 drives of the game in last year's season opener vs Ohio... They went 3-and-out in their 1st drive tonight.
Will Gardner TD pass to Charles Standberry gives Louisville the early lead...
It's the 1st time a QB other than Teddy Bridgewater threw a 1st-quarter TD pass for the Cardinals since September 17, 2011 when Will Stein did so at Kentucky.