Louisville Basketball looks to take advantage of its early opponents, but can the Cardinals take care of mid-major teams and be competitive against power 5 teams?
The Louisville Cardinals are looking to avoid a sloppy start to the 2023-24 season unlike how they started last season. The Cardinals started the season 0-9 last year and had blowout losses to teams like Arkansas by 26 points, Maryland by 25 points, and Texas Tech by a whopping 32 points. The Cardinals also started the season by losing three straight to Bellarmine, Wright State, and Appalachian State. Which all ended by losing exactly by one point.
Kenny Payne and the Cardinals are going to look to avoid that type of disastrous start and hopefully can take advantage of some the easier games on this schedule before going into ACC conference play. Louisville faces a slew of mid major teams which include UMBC, Chattanooga, Coppin State, Arkansas State, and Pepperdine. They also face the Kentucky Wildcats on December 21st, and will face the Texas longhorns to start the Empire Classic tournament in Madison Square Garden on November 19th.
The Cardinals need to take advantage of the mid-major teams on this schedule. Not only would it show growth from the season before, but it would give Louisville some confidence heading into some of these tougher games. A team that is confident was something that the Cardinals struggled with last season. It took ten games last season for them to get a win.
That is something that the 2023-24 Cardinals should avoid at all costs, and should look to take care of business against these so called lesser opponents this coming season. This also goes for the power 5 teams on the schedule (Texas & UK). If the Cardinals can at least be competitive in these games, it will give hope to an already starved Louisville fanbase.
Here are the top 3 most important non-conference games that the Louisville Cardinals will play in the upcoming 2023-24 basketball season.