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Kevin Ware lays in hospital bed with the NCAA Midwest Regional trophy (Picture)

Kevin-Ware-hospital-bed-trophy

After defeating Duke in the NCAA Midwest Regional final on Sunday night, the Louisville Cardinals had only one person on their minds. Sophomore guard Kevin Ware suffered one of the most gruesome leg injuries you will ever see in the first half of his team’s convincing 85-63 victory. However, he still managed to get his hands on the trophy shortly after it was presented to his teammates.

As you can see from the photo above that Peyton Siva shared on Instagram, the Cardinals brought the trophy signifying their Final Four berth to Ware’s hospital room. There was no question his broken leg helped inspire Louisville in the second half, as Ware reportedly kept telling his teammates to “win the game” while trainers were tending to his injury.

From a basketball standpoint, Louisville is deep enough to overcome Ware’s injury. The question was how they would react emotionally, and I think Rick Pitino’s team answered that in the second half against Duke. After the game, one of Ware’s teammates wore his jersey as a tribute to him. Expect the Cardinals to continue to draw motivation from Ware in the Final Four.

H/T Game On!

Chane Behanan wears Kevin Ware’s jersey after Louisville win (Pictures)

Chane Behanan Kevin Ware jersey

Chane Behanan had injured teammate Kevin Ware close in mind after Louisville defeated Duke 85-63 to reach the Final Four of the NCAA tournament Sunday.

Late in the Cardinals’ win over the Blue Devils, he put on Ware’s No. 5 jersey to honor his teammate who suffered a nasty broken leg in the first half of the game. After the game, Behanan walked around on the court after the game wearing the jersey. He later took it off so that the entire team could hold it up for a team picture on the court:

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Louisville celebrates with Bill Clinton after beating Villanova (Pictures)

Bill-Clinton-Louisville

If you can think of a better way to celebrate a big victory than chilling with Bill Clinton, I would love to hear it. The guy’s a legend, and the legend made a surprise appearance in the Louisville locker room after the Cardinals beat Villanova in the Big East quarterfinals on Thursday night.

For those of you who can’t make it out, Clinton is the dude with the white hair in the photo above being given the bunny ear treatment. For a better look at the 42nd president of the United States, here are a couple pictures of Louisville forward Chane Behanan photobombing the crap out of him.

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John Calipari’s daughter takes shot at Louisville fans over cartoon (Picture)

Rooting for injuries is never a classy thing to do, but it’s safe to say there are very few Louisville fans who are weeping over the fact that Kentucky has lost freshman Nerlens Noel for the remainder of the season.

Noel, who was averaging over 10 points and nearly 10 rebounds per game, suffered a season-ending knee injury during a loss to Florida on Feb. 12. The Wildcats are now in danger of missing the NCAA tournament, which a cartoon in the Courier Journal reminded everyone of on Wednesday. Via The Cardinal Connect:

Louisville-Nerlens-Noel-cartoon

Erin Calipari, the 26-year-old daughter of Kentucky coach John Calipari, was apparently offended by the drawing. She decided to come up with a cartoon of her own after seeing it, which she posted on Twitter:

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Notre Dame beats Louisville in five overtimes (video highlights)

Notre Dame outlasted Louisville 104-101 in an epic regular-season Big East basketball game that went five overtimes before a winner was finally decided Saturday in South Bend in what turned out to be the longest game in conference history.

The Fighting Irish trailed the Cardinals in most of the overtime periods and only led for around five of the extra 25 minutes. Notre Dame led the final two minutes of the last overtime and managed to hang on for the win.

The lengthy game was a familiar feeling for Notre Dame head coach Mike Brey. Brey was in his second season coaching the Irish when they beat Georgetown 116-111 in four overtimes on Feb. 9, 2002 — exactly 11 years earlier.

Notre Dame and Louisville were tied at 60 after regulation, so nearly two-thirds of the scoring took place in the overtime periods.

Notre Dame guard Eric Atkins was the iron man for the game. He played 60 of the possible 65 minutes and scored 14 points. Louisville forward Chase Behanan led both teams with a career-high 30 points and 15 rebounds.

Here is a summary of the key plays at the end of each period that resulted in the game going five overtimes:

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Rick Pitino on Louisville loss: We shot free throws like Shaq and Dwight Howard

Louisville lost its second straight tough game in a row on Tuesday night, this time at the hands of Villanova. Over the weekend, the Cardinals lost a tough home game to No. 6-ranked Syracuse. However, the Wildcats are a team they should have beaten. Had they been more successful from the charity stripe, Rick Pitino’s team may have come away with a win.

Louisville hit only 12 of its 24 free throw attempts, and Pitino was livid about it after the game. So livid, in fact, that he decided to take it out on Shaquille O’Neal and Dwight Howard.

“It was really a simple answer to why we lost,” Pitino told reporters, via the Courier-Journal. “Basically we were Dwight Howard or Shaquille O’Neal. We came down we had a six-point lead and it could have been eight. Could have kept coming down and extending it but our free throws were a turnover. Very simple answer for why we lost. Our foul shooting was despicable.”

The final score was 73-64, so obviously the free throws the Cardinals missed were crucial. Louisville missed the front end of a one-and-one on two occasions down the stretch, which made it incredibly difficult to close out a game that they led in the second half. At one point, forward Chane Behanan missed five free throws in a row.

The Cardinals has lost two games since being ranked No. 1 in the nation, and they have not gotten off to a good start in Big East play. If they don’t solve their free-throw shooting woes going forward, they’ll be in danger of falling even further.

Chest bump to The Dagger

Louisville Forward Chane Behanan Says Cards Will Go Undefeated (Video)

With the exception of Rex Ryan and maybe a few others, most coaches don’t enjoy making guarantees or hearing their players make them.  Guaranteeing your team is going to succeed in some way does nothing but put a bullseye on your back.  For whatever reason, some players like making promises when microphones are in their face.  The latest “why would he say that?” moment in the sports world was brought to us by Louisville freshman Chane Behanan, who said that the Cardinals are not only the No. 1 team in the country but they are also going to go undefeated.  Check out this interview clip that The Dagger passed along:

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