Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

No. 12 Louisville clobbers USF by 39

TAMPA — During a halftime ceremony in which his 2013 team received its Big East championship rings, USF softball coach Ken Eriksen took the microphone and addressed the segment of the Sun Dome basketball audience not bedecked in red.

"You need to hang in there with this university," he said.

Honoring Eriksen's request might have been easier had USF been able to hang in there with No. 12 Louisville.

What began as a mismatch quickly segued into a mauling Wednesday night against the reigning national champion. Offensively impotent against Louisville's pressure, the Bulls finished with nearly twice as many turnovers (23) as assists (12) in an 86-47 embarrassment.

The 39-point margin of defeat was seven points shy of the program record. With roughly six minutes to play, Louisville had as many points off turnovers (35) as USF (10-9, 1-5 American Athletic Conference) had points.

"This will certainly go down as a game I want to forget as fast as possible," said coach Stan Heath, who can only hope for collective amnesia with a contest Sunday at No. 23 Memphis.

"They dictated and did whatever they wanted to do. We didn't have any answers."

Outmatched and a bit awestruck, the Bulls struggled to find open looks as the Cardinals (17-3, 6-1) pressed and diversified their defense to exploit a USF backcourt still missing junior point guard Anthony Collins (knee).

USF's turnover total was a season high, not that the Bulls guards were the lone culprits. At least three turnovers occurred on inbounds passes.

Offensively, only one of USF's eight first-half field goals — a Shemiye McLendon jumper — came outside the paint. By then, Louisville already had a 27-11 lead, and the Cardinals took a 45-22 advantage into the locker room. At that stage, Bulls top scorer Victor Rudd had two points.

"We were trying to change up as much as possible and keep Rudd from getting a lot of attempts," Louisville coach Rick Pitino said.

"They played very well (Saturday) against Cincinnati (a 61-54 loss) and they just had an off night tonight. We were very much ready to play because of that Cincinnati game."

Saturday's competitiveness bore no resemblance to Wednesday's debacle, when the Cardinals lead got as high as 44.

As USF continued its futility (1-for-8) from 3-point range, Louisville hit 12 of 23 from behind the arc against the league's worst 3-point defense. Five Cardinals finished in double figures; freshman Chris Perry (10) was the only Bull to do so.

"We just didn't have any answers, and I just thought we were a little bit in awe," said Heath, whose club has lost its past 12 to ranked teams.

"You can't play the jerseys. You've got to play those guys inside the jerseys. I think tonight we were playing the jerseys and were just kind of mesmerized."

No. 12 Louisville clobbers USF by 39 01/22/14 [Last modified: Thursday, January 23, 2014 12:01am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Rays shut out Angels to cap homestand, get back to .500 (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The Rays completed their seven-game homestand Thursday with a 4-0 victory against the Angels, a win that moved them back to .500 for the season.

    Tampa Bay Rays third baseman Evan Longoria (3) high fives designated hitter Corey Dickerson (10) after they score on the single by center fielder Colby Rasmus (28) in the first inning of the game between the Tampa Bay Rays and the Los Angeles Angels at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Thursday, May 25, 2017.
  2. Bucs suspended RB Doug Martin breaks his silence and says his drug problem is 'definitely behind me.'


    He would not talk about the drug he abused. He didn’t identify the rehab facility he entered last January or how long he was there.

    Doug Martin was contrite but optimistic about returning to the form he demonstrated as the NFL's second leading rusher two years ago.
  3. Kickoff times announced for Florida-Michigan, FSU-Alabama


    College football's blockbuster Sept. 2 season openers finally have kickoff times.

  4. Why not Kaepernick?: Ryan Fitzpatrick could be ‘Earl Morrall to Jameis Winston’s Bob Griese’


    As the football world continues to question the Bucs’ motives for signing Ryan Fitzpatrick over Colin Kaepernick as Jameis Winston’s backup, veteran NFL writer Rick Gosselin weighs in with this post titled “The Bucs are playing a mind …

    The Bucs want Ryan Fitzpatrick to mentor Jameis Winston.
  5. This tweet from the Bucs, mocking the Falcons' 28-3 lead they lost in the Super Bowl against the Falcons, prompted a public apology from head coach Dirk Koetter, who called it "unprofessional and not smart."