Boston College Opponent Previews: Louisville Cardinals
During the summer months and as we prepare for the upcoming season, BC Maven will be doing weekly previews of all of Boston College's opponents. Next up on the docket is a team BC holds a two game winning streak against, the Louisville Cardinals. Last year was a disaster for the Cards, and after the season they fired head coach Bobby Petrino, and brought in Appalachian State head coach Scott Satterfield He'll have his work cut out for him, as the program is in dire need of a boost. Can BC catch them before he really turns things around?
Previous Previews: Week 1 vs. Virginia Tech
Previous Matchups: As mentioned before BC has won the previous two matchups between the programs. In 2017 it was the epic AJ Dillon where he arrived and he ran for 272 yards and four touchdowns. Last year Louisville came to the Heights, and BC won pretty easily 38-20. Before that Louisville had a three game win streak, including 2016 when Heisman winner Lamar Jackson ran all over the Eagles and the Cards won 52-7.
Head Coach: Scott Satterfield, first year. Before coming to Louisville, he was the head coach at App State for five seasons, where he amassed a 51-24 record, capped off with last season when he went 10-2 and finished tied for first in the Sun Belt Conference. He spent some time before this as the OC as FIU in 2010-11, QB coach in Toledo, and did a variety of offensive position coaches before that at App State as well.
2018 Season: It was a brutal season for the Cardinals as they finished the year a disappointing 2-10. Nothing went right for the Cardinals and let's take a look at all the tough things that happened to them in 2018
* Defense allowed a whopping 44 points per game, only besting Oregon State and UConn in the nation.
* Only scored 19.8 points per game, good for 122nd in the nation
* Went winless in conference
* Lost nine games in a row to wrap up the season.
Louisville had no quarterback pretty much for the entire season as Jawon Hand and Malik Cunningham took turns playing ineffectively. To the surprise of no one head coach Bobby Petrino was fired at the end of the season, just two years removed from going 9-4 and having a Heisman winning quarterback.
2019 Outlook: I really like Louisville's hire of Scott Satterfield, who should bring a real tough attitude to turn around the program. But it is going to take time to fix the disaster that Petrino left. Louisville still really doesn't have a developed quarterback, Hand/Cunningham or freshman Evan Conley will start, but they are all young and have struggled. There isn't much in terms of running backs as Colin Wilson is probably the only RB returning with experience. The one big weapon they do have is Dez Fitzpatrick, who could be one of the best wide receivers in the conference, well at least best WR's who doesn't play for Clemson.
On the defensive side of the ball, Satterfield is bringing Bryan Brown his former DC with him from App State. When he was with App State he put together some fantastic defenses, but just like the offense it may take time. The big addition for Louisville is that they added a big playmaker, T.J. Holl who was the Patriot League Player of the Year for Colgate is on his way, and he led a defense that only allowed 9 points per game. Satterfield looks like he is hitting the recruiting trail running for 2020, but the 2019 class was only ranked 69th in the country. While I expect the Cards defense to improve, it probably will take some time.
BC Game Date: Saturday October 5, 2019
Location: Cardinal Stadium, Louisville KY
Chances of BC Victory: 70%.
S&P Chances of BC Victory: 52%