Media Day Sheds Light on Strong’s Second Year

The future continues to look bright with Charlie Strong at the helm of Louisville Football.

The Cardinals hosted their Media Day event at Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium today to a parade of good news. The overall message from the interview heavy event was all about Louisville’s future. Strong and his staff couldn’t stop buzzing about what the years to come will hold.  News that will certainly cultivate the hype about a program that desperately wants to return to its winning ways.

While Coach Strong was the centerpiece of the show, a quote from Defensive Coordinator Vance Bedford stole the show.

“It’s like I tell people. Get on the train right now, ’cause coach Strong got it coming. Right now, the light at the end of the tunnel? It’s not safe. It’s not safe. The future is coming, and if you’re in the way we’re going to roll right through you. So get on the train now. All you people on the side, you on the side, it’s coming. Coach Strong has got the train rolling. We’ve got some great recruits, coaches on the staff, we get the right people here, we’ll get it back to where it’s supposed to be. We expect that stadium to be 55,000, standing room only, people out the gates going, ‘Let me in! Let me in!’ The train is rolling. Anybody out there, I can’t tell you what’s going to happen right now, but it’s coming. Get on board, or get out of the way.”

Coach Strong addressed reports on Media Day.

Bedford’s words were just the brightest spot of what was a united coaching staff. Through out the day it became clear that UofL’s biggest strength wasn’t the fresh talent, but the wisemen that are molding it. Louisville’s coaching staff looked world-class, giving off the feel that the worst times are certainly behind them. The only downside to the staff’s success is the attention its members will likely receive from bigger programs down the road.

Despite the high praise and excitement for the years beyond 2011, the expectations for 2011 were hushed and tempered. The Cards are ranked 7th in the Big East, despite their high-profile recruiting class. No one in the camp would doubt that reaching a bowl for the second straight year would be a difficult task.

Louisville’s biggest question mark continued to be at the quarterback position. Hometown boy Will Stein remains the starter in the depth chart. However, its all but official that Freshman Teddy Bridgewater will see a  lot snaps this season, and most likely a few starts. Strong commented that “someone had to step up,” agreeing that the lack of certainty behind center is a huge issue.

The two other major problems highlighted by Strong were in the offensive line and among the cornerbacks. Both spots are wafer thin on talent and will likely pose the weakest points in the team. Strong even went on to say that defense will be “the strong point of the team,” and that the only thing holding them back is weakness on the outsides.

Louisville has 22 days to work out the chinks before they open up the season at home against Murray State on September 1st. That’s when all the questions surrounding Strong’s second voyage at the helm of the Cardinals will finally be answered.