Saturday the Cards are set to square off against the U Conn Huskies for the final time in a regular season game as conference foes. Both teams look strengthen their tournament resume with what would be considered a quality win for each team. Louisville may have the most to play for because it’s senior day for the Cardinal’s all time winningest class and the Cards are playing for a number 1 seed in their first and only AAC tournament.
The Cards were able to beat the Huskies by 12 at Harry A. Gampel Pavilion earlier in the year without starting guard Chris Jones. Louisville was able to get the win in large part by limiting U Conn big man DeAndre Daniels to only 3 points. If Louisville wants to beat the Huskies again, they’ll have to contain AAC player of the year candidate Shabazz Napier wholeads the team in just about every statistical category.
Louisville looks to get the same production from their player of the year candidate, Russ Smith. In the first match-up Russ scored 23 points, with 12 of those coming from the free throw line. Russ will be playing for the last time in the Yum! Center in what will likely be a very emotional game for him with a chance to show head to head that he’s the best player in the conference.
Russ wasn’t alone in beating the Huskies in the first meeting, Montrezl Harrell scored 18 and had 13 rebounds, and I look for him to have a similar impact with how great he has played as of late. Hancock added 13 of his own and Blackshear chipped in with 9.
Louisville will be honoring their seniors: Luke Hancock, Tim Henderson, Stephan Van Treese, and Russ Smith.
Game Time: 2 p.m.
Radio: WKRD 790 AM