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The Cards Battle for Legitimacy

posted Sep 12, 2016, 10:38 AM by Austin James   [ updated Sep 12, 2016, 10:38 AM ]
Louisville QB Lamar Jackson leaping
for a TD at Syracuse
So far this year Lamar Jackson has been putting up ridiculous numbers both through the air and on the ground. His 13 total TDs have been described as video-game stats, and he has led the Cardinals to two dominant wins over Charlotte and Syracuse. Charlotte was definitely a token game to start the season but Syracuse is a Power-5 team, a very weak one, but a Power-5 team nonetheless. Their defense has looked decent in their first two match-ups; Cardinals opponents have averaged 21 points a game. But, if the offense continues production holding the opponent to 21 is going to be more than enough.

So the obvious question becomes, is Louisville legit? Can they win the ACC and compete with the top 5?

The Cards will get a chance to answer that this week as they host No. 2 Florida State at noon on Saturday (ABC). Florida State is also 2-0 with a dramatic win over Ole Miss in week one and a 52-8 romping of Charleston Southern the following week. This game is going to be a big indicator as to how the ACC will shake out this year, and is the game for both teams so far this year. Clemson has been thoroughly unimpressive this year with close calls against unranked Auburn and Troy. I believe the winner of this game will beat Clemson and win the ACC. 

This game is going to prove if Louisville can play at then highest level in the country, and if I'm a Cardinal I'm licking my chops. I'm not sold on this Florida State team being the second best team in the land. I think they showed some great resiliency and toughness against Ole Miss, but the team that played the first half of that game faces Alabama, Ohio State, or Michigan, the second half deficit is insurmountable. This is a game that Louisville can win. Florida State is going to try to use their speed to beat you, and the Cards have plenty of speed to counter. If they can contain Dalvin Cook, I think that Lamar Jackson will continue to play like a star and lead Louisville to a win.

If the Cards can pull of this win, there can be no doubt they are contender for this year's playoff.