We take a look at the five best moments from Louisville football’s 2016 college football season where they finished 9-4.
The 2016 Louisville football season didn’t quite end like we were hoping, but that doesn’t mean that it was without greatness. The Cards were able to achieve some amazing things this year, but they have even more to accomplish in the future.
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Lamar Jackson held the spotlight for most of the season and that’s why we’re starting off this countdown right with Jackson’s incredible game against Charlotte.
Sep 1, 2016; Louisville, KY, USA; Louisville Cardinals quarterback Lamar Jackson (8) runs the ball past Charlotte 49ers linebacker Carl Yonter (47) for a touchdown during the first quarter at Papa John
5. Lamar Jackson’s 8 First-Half Touchdowns Against Charlotte
Lamar Jackson got the 2016 season off right, as he had 8 first-half touchdowns against the Charlotte 49ers on opening night. He gave the Cardinals a 56-0 lead before Bobby Petrino decided to put Kyle Bolin in the game.
It wasn’t so much that we were excited that Louisville was beating Charlotte, it was the fact that Jackson made them look like a high-school team.
Not to mention, eight touchdowns in the first half, from one player, is something that you don’t see too often.
Oct 29, 2016; Charlottesville, VA, USA; Louisville Cardinals quarterback Lamar Jackson (8) runs with the ball past Virginia Cavaliers defensive end Steven Wright (20) in the second quarter at Scott Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
4. Comeback Victory Against Virginia
This was one of the most stressful games of the entire 2016 season, but this time the Cards were actually able to pull out the victory thanks to Lamar Jackson and Jaylen Smith. Virginia led the entire game, but Louisville was able to comeback to only see the Cavaliers make a touchdown drive and a two-point conversion to go up 25-24.
We were all freaking out that a Louisville football game would finally come down to a field goal because the Cards were going through kickers like crazy at this point in the year.
However, Lamar Jackson made sure that it would never come down to that, as he threw the game-winning touchdown pass to Jaylen Smith with 13 seconds left.
It was an amazing comeback and one that we will not soon forget.
Sep 9, 2016; Syracuse, NY, USA; Louisville Cardinals quarterback Lamar Jackson (8) leaps over Syracuse Orange defensive back Cordell Hudson (20) while running with the ball during the second quarter at the Carrier Dome. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports
3. Lamar Jackson Hurdling The Syracuse Defender
This might have been the signature picture of the 2016 Lamar Jackson Heisman Trophy campaign. The Syracuse defender in this picture, will forever be remembered by Louisville football fans for being the guy that helped Jackson get in front of the national media, once and for all.
The overall reaction to this play was incredible. It was all over Twitter, Facebook, ESPN, you name it and this highlight was there.
Not only was this one of the best moments from Louisville’s season, but you would be hard-pressed to find a 2016 college football highlight tape that doesn’t have this play on it.
I can’t wait to see what a third-year Lamar Jackson will have up his sleeve in 2017.
Sep 17, 2016; Louisville, KY, USA; Louisville Cardinals quarterback Lamar Jackson (8) stretches out to score a touchdown against the Florida State Seminoles during the second half at Papa John
2. Beating Florida State With College Gameday In Town
If the Cardinals wanted to prove that they were for real, then they had to beat the Florida State Seminoles in Papa Johns Cardinal Stadium last September. College Gameday finally made it’s first appearance in Louisville and the Cards put on a offensive clinic for the entire country to see.
Louisville ended up beating the Seminoles 63-20 and that was one of FSU’s worst losses in school history. It was clear that Lamar Jackson was the Heisman front-runner and that these Cards had a legit chance of winning the ACC in 2016.
Unfortunately, they weren’t able to beat Clemson, but they sure gave the Tigers one heck of a fight.
I’m sure the Seminoles can’t wait to get Lamar Jackson in their own stadium in 2017. Be careful what you wish for FSU fans.
Dec 10, 2016; New York, NY, USA; Louisville quarterback Lamar Jackson and his mother Felicia Jones pose with the trophy during a press conference at the New York Marriott Marquis after winning the 2016 Heisman Trophy award during a presentation at the Playstation Theater. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
1. Lamar Jackson Won The 2016 Heisman Trophy
This was the easy choice for the best moment of 2016. Lamar Jackson became the first Louisville football player to ever win the award and put the Cardinals football program officially on college football’s biggest “award stage”.
It was awesome to see a Louisville quarterback receiving such a prestigious award in front of the entire country. Jackson had an amazing season and ran away with the voting after all.
Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson made it interesting, but Lamar Jackson was the clear favorite from the very first game against Charlotte and probably won the award against Florida State on College Gameday.
We are all looking forward to seeing Jackson win his second Heisman Trophy next December.