Category: Louisville Cardinals

6 Dec 1998: Lamar Thomas #85 of the Miami Dolphins celebrates during the game against the Oakland Raiders at the Network Associates Coliseum in Oakland, California. The Dolphins defeated the Raiders 22-17. Mandatory Credit: Jed Jacobsohn  /Allsport
Getty Images

Louisville WR coach Lamar Thomas waltzes across state to Kentucky

Leave a comment

The post-National Signing Day coaching movement frenzy has started a little early this year.

Kentucky announced the addition of wide receivers coach Lamar Thomas on Tuesday evening, a name that should be familiar to Wildcats fans. Thomas spent the two previous seasons in a similar capacity at Louisville.

“I’ve known Lamar since my time at Miami and have always thought highly of him,” UK head coach Mark Stoops said in a statement. “The competitiveness Lamar showed as a player has translated into his work ethic as a coach. I’ve followed his career and been impressed with how his players play and how he handles himself on the recruiting trail. We’re excited to have him on our staff.”

Thomas also has coaching experience at Western Kentucky and Hampton, plus an eight-year NFL career with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Miami Dolphins from which to draw. Current Dolphin DeVante Parker counts among Thomas’ pupils.

“There are a lot of good things going on in the Kentucky football program and the opportunity came up for me to be a part of it and I couldn’t pass it up,” Thomas said. “I’ve known Coach Stoops a long time. He used to visit the high school I worked for in Florida when he recruited for Florida State and he’s always been a stand-up person and a person I really like and admire. I like how he runs his program and what he stands for. I look forward to coaching in the SEC and I also look forward to coaching the receivers at UK. I can’t wait.”

Thomas made $203,000 in 2015 according to the USA Today salary database. The coach he replaces, Tommy Mainord, made just north of $275,000.

ACC releases 2016 football schedule

Elon v Duke
9 Comments

A little over seven months before the start of the 2016 season, the ACC has finalized the schedules its member schools will face this upcoming year

The first conference game of the 2016 season will pit Georgia Tech against Boston College Sept. 3 at 7:30 a.m.  The early start time is due to the fact that the game will be played in Dublin, Ireland, the first time a league game has been played in that country. It is only the third ACC game played outside of the United States, and both of the others involved Clemson: vs. Wake Forest in Tokyo, Japan, in 1982 and vs. Duke in Tokyo in 1991.

The first games of the new season featuring ACC members will be played two days prior, with Louisville hosting Charlotte and Tulane traveling to Wake Forest Sept. 1.  As has become a tradition, the ACC will close out opening weekend with a Labor Day night game — Florida State vs. Ole Miss in the Orlando Kickoff game. The games in Ireland and Orlando are two of five neutral-site games involving ACC teams, the others being North Carolina vs. Georgia (Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game, Sept. 3, Georgia Dome; Virginia Tech vs. Tennessee (Bristol Motor Speedway, Sept. 10); and Syracuse vs. Notre Dame (MetLife Stadium).

The ACC also released some notes trumpeting the strength of the conference’s schedules:

ACC teams will play more games than any other Power Five conference:

— Against non-conference teams that are ranked in ESPN’s 2016 Too Early Top 25 rankings (12). The league will also play a higher percentage of its non-conference games against teams in the Way-Too-Early Top 25 (21%).

— Against non-conference teams that were ranked in the final Associated Press Top 25 (12). The league will again play a higher percentage (21%) of its non-conference games against these teams.

— Against non-conference teams that were ranked in the final Coaches poll (14) as well as a higher percentage (25%).

— Against more non-conference teams that went to bowl games in 2015 (27).

— Against FBS non-conference teams that won 10 or more games (15) as well as against FBS non-conference teams that won nine or more games (18).

ACC teams are also playing games against opponents which had a higher overall winning percentage (.562) in 2015 than any other Power Five Conference, and its FBS non-conference opponents had the second-highest winning percentage of any league (.559).

“Our programs continue to showcase our football strength with an appealing slate of games scheduled for 2016,” said ACC commissioner John Swofford in a statement. “In addition to a number of compelling conference matchups, we again have arguably the toughest non-conference schedule by any measure. With our depth, competitiveness and rivalries, ACC fans can look forward to another season of exciting games every week.”

The Syracuse-Notre Dame game in New Jersey is one of five contests for the Irish against ACC teams, the others being North Carolina State (Oct. 8), Duke (Sept. 24), Miami (Oct. 29) and Virginia Tech. The latter three games will all be played at Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend.

And, finally, if you’re only going to circle one game on your ACC football calendar, make it this one: Clemson at Florida State, Oct. 29. Both of those teams, expected to enter the 2016 season in the Top 10, will be coming off bye weeks.

As for the rest of the newly-released slates, click HERE for a helmet schedule and HERE for a week-to-week schedule.

SEC, Ohio State tops on Carolina, Denver Super Bowl rosters

KNOXVILLE, TN - OCTOBER 29:  Former Tennesse quarterback Peyton Manning and current quarterback for the Indianapolis Colts is honored alongside his former college coach Phillip Fulmer before the start of the game against the South Carolina Gamecocks on October 29, 2005 at Neyland Stadium in Knoxville, Tennessee.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Getty Images
5 Comments

Cam Newton may be hurtling toward history, but the former Auburn quarterback will not be the lone player representing the SEC in next month’s Super Bowl.  In fact, he’s far, far from it.

As you may have heard, Newton’s Carolina Panthers are set to square off with Peyton Manning‘s Denver Broncos in the 50th Super Bowl Feb. 3.  Manning and Newton are two of and FBS-best 30 former SEC players who are on the two teams’ rosters, which includes those on the 53-man, reserved/injured list, practice squad, reserved/suspended by commissioner and reserve/future squad.

The Pac-12 is next with 23, followed by the Big Ten (21) and ACC (17).  The final Power Five conference, the Big 12, has 10, three less than the Mountain West’s 13.  The AAC, with eight, is the only Group of Five league to come close to double digits.  The MAC, meanwhile, is the only conference to be shutout, while all of the other divisions in the NCAA combined for 18 players.

Nearly every SEC team is represented in this year’s big game, the lone exception being Vanderbilt.  Of the dozen schools in the Pac-12, only Arizona and Washington State are missing.  Both the ACC and Big Ten have 11 of their 14 teams in the game, the lone exceptions being Clemson, Louisville and Virginia Tech for the former and Illinois, Minnesota and Rutgers for the latter.

One of those B1G schools that’s in, Nebraska, has had at least one player on a Super Bowl roster for 23 straight years, the longest active streak for any FBS program.

Ohio State easily outdistances individual schools with seven, three more than the four each for Auburn, Georgia Tech, Oregon State and Tennessee.  Alabama, Arizona State, Colorado State, Georgia, Nevada, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Oregon, Texas A&M, USC and Utah.

A total of 20 schools have two players each, including Coastal Carolina, the only non-FBS program in the group.  The other 19 includes Arkansas, Boise State, Duke, Florida, Florida State, Iowa, Kansas, Maryland, Michigan, Mississippi State, Missouri, North Carolina, San Diego State, South Carolina, Stanford, Troy, Tulane, Washington and Wisconsin.

Miss. St. confirms hiring of Peter Sirmon as DC, Terrell Buckley as secondary coach

Peter Sirmon
Associated Press
3 Comments

Following up on a week’s worth of speculation, Mississippi State has confirmed the additions of two assistants to Dan Mullen‘s coaching staff, including his new defensive boss.

First and foremost, Peter Sirmon has been hired to be Mullen’s defensive coordinator.  Sirmon replaces Manny Diaz, who left MSU after one season to take the same job with Mark Richt at Miami.

Sirmon, who had spent the past two seasons as associate head coach and recruiting coordinator at USC, will also serve as linebackers coach.

“Peter is one of the bright young defensive minds in all of college football,” Mullen said. “He will relate to our players well, and he has outstanding knowledge of the game with his experience as a college coach and former NFL linebacker. His recruiting prowess is evident by the talent he brought in and developed at his previous coaching jobs. He’s a great fit to lead our defense.”

“This is a great opportunity to join Coach Mullen’s staff and build a championship defense at Mississippi State,” Sirmon said. “It’s been exciting so far on the recruiting trail. We want to continue to build relationships and bring elite talent to Starkville. We have an exceptional core of experienced players coming back, and I am thrilled to get to know each of them.”

In addition to Sirmon, Terrell Buckley was added as secondary coach as well as recruiting coordinator. Buckley spent the past two seasons as cornerbacks coach at Louisville.

Finally, Mullen confirmed the reports of the departure of Deshea Townsend for the NFL’s Tennessee Titans.  Townsend had spent the past three seasons in Starkville as cornerbacks coach.

Replacing Townsend would once again complete Mullen’s nine-man staff.

“We thank Deshea for his three years of service at Mississippi State and wish him all the best as he pursues his dream of coaching in the NFL,” Mullen said. “We have begun a search for an assistant coach who is the right fit for our program.”

Western Kentucky lands a second Louisville LB transfer

Nick Dawson-Brents
Associated Press
Leave a comment

Tuesday, Western Kentucky added grad transfer Keith Brown to its roster. Two days later, the Cardinals’ linebacker pipeline has provided yet another roster addition.

Nick Dawson-Brents told the Bowling Green Daily News that he will be following his former teammate to WKY and continue his collegiate playing career with the Hilltoppers. Like his grad transferring fellow linebacker, Dawson-Brents will be eligible to play immediately in 2016.

This upcoming season will be the final year of eligibility for both players.

“The environment and the people – the coaches – it was a really great experience,” Dawson-Brents said when asked why he chose WKU as his transfer destination. “I really felt like they were genuine. I’m just ready to accept the challenge they gave me. I’m all in. I’m ready to get there and start pursuing my dream again.”

Dawson-Brents, who played in 13 games for the Cardinals last season, told the Daily News that he believes he will be moving from linebacker to defensive end with the Hilltoppers.

Dawson-Brents and Brown are actually one of three former UofL players who will suit up for WKU in 2016. In December of this past year, Tyler Ferguson transferred into the WKU football program. Because the quarterback left the Cardinals in August of 2015 and didn’t play at all this past season, he’ll be eligible to play this season.