How far can Louisville basketball go in March?

One game remains for Louisville basketball before the beginning of post-season play. The Big Red Louie Podcast examines expectations and the potential of a deep run.

It’s been a little over a month-and-a-half (damn technical difficulties) but finally, the Big Red Louie Podcast is back. Myself (Jacob Lane) and co-host Presley Meyer were joined by good friend Alex Stengel to talk everything Louisville basketball.

For as long as I’ve been a fan of the University of Louisville, the month of March has been about raising the bar and exceeding expectations in postseason play. Under Rick Pitino, the Cards were known for playing their best basketball late in the season when it mattered and putting together deep runs into the NCAA Tournament.

Bottom line. The only thing that mattered was how you performed in March.

Chris Mack came to Louisville with the expectations from fans that each year that was going to be the same, regardless of the difference in coaching style and scheme. Competing for championships should be the standard each and every year with Louisville being one of the most prestigious programs across the country.

We didn’t expect it to be this soon but in year two the program now sits primed to go on a deep tournament run behind a veteran-laded team. It’s been an interesting season, to say the least, as the Cards have had tons of twists and turns along the way, looking like a championship-caliber team on some nights and a first-round upset contender on others.

Against Virginia Tech on Sunday, Louisville basketball began to show signs of reaching the level of intensity and mental toughness that Chris Mack has been pleading for all season. Mack has praised his team plenty of times this season for playing at the highest level on both defense and offense and not being phased by slow starts, poor offensive nights, or runs from their opponents.

However, too many times this season that wasn’t the case night-to-night causing a ton of frustration amongst fans which we discussed at length during the show. The Cards showed signs of being able to turn it up to another level on both sides of the floor against Virginia Tech, starting with none other than Jordan Nwora.

Playing in the final game of his career at the KFC Yum! Center, Nwora put on one hell of a show, to the point that Chris Mack called it “maybe one of his most complete games in a Louisville uniform.” As we discussed during the podcast it has the potential to change everything for Louisville.

On Twitter we asked “if Louisville goes on a deep run into the tournament the biggest reason will be _________-.” We got over 200 responses highlighting a variety of things that will have to change if the Cards are going to change the narrative and make the deep run many expected throughout the season.

Dominant guard play, Steven Enoch getting things going, leadership, adjustments to the lineup, David Johnson, and much more were among the responses but the one answer mentioned more than anything else was Jordan Nwora.

Our discussion on Nwora led to us previewing the Cards final game of the season against Virginia, which could answer a lot of the questions we all have about whether what we saw against Virginia Tech is here to stay.

There was a ton more to the show, including a new game called “Net or Nah” guessing the NET rankings of several teams who are firmly in the tournament and a few who currently sit on the bubble for the NCAA Tournament.

Finally, stick around for three dudes breaking down the Bachelor as we give our thoughts on how Peter has done this season and how we think the show will end.

Show listing:

  • :30 We’re back!
  • 1:00 Why you should pay attention to Centre College
  • 5:30 Recapping Senior Night
  • 14:00 Keith Oddo vs. Snacks
  • 15:30 Can Jordan Nwora take things to a new level?
  • 24:00 Is playing Virginia like going to the dentist?
  • 38:00 Does Louisville have a championship mentality?
  • 50:00 Is the NET legit. and will Louisville reap the benefit of the rankings?
  • 1:05:30 Louisville basketball reminds us of this successful squad
  • 1:10:30 Bachelor recap and predictions

You can catch the show above or listen anywhere you get your podcasts, and once you get there please rate, subscribe, and share!