It was in Week 2 of last season when Lamar Jackson gifted us all The Hurdle. A year later, Louisville's Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback didn't deliver a touchstone moment in the second game of the season, a 47-28 win over North Carolina.
But he did show that in 2017, he has been even more important to the Cardinals.
In the No. 17 Cardinals' victory, Jackson racked up six touchdowns within his 525 yards -- 393 through the air and 132 on the ground -- a total that was 74.3 percent of what Louisville had as a team (706). That came one week after he was responsible for 92.5 (485) of the 524 total yards the Cardinals hung on Purdue in 35-28 win.
In all, that gives Jackson 1,010 of Louisville's 1,230 or 82.1 percent of the team's production, and he's responsible for all eight of their TDs.
Last season, in the opening-week win over Charlotte, when Jackson had 405 yards, that was 61 percent of the Cardinals' overall production (663). Then, in that victory in Week 2 when the QB hurdled an incoming Orange defender, he was at 72 percent (610 of Louisville's 845).
That was just five more yards (1,015) than Jackson has in '17 at the same, time, but that '16 figure was also 67.3 percent of Louisville's overall production. He was also responsible for 13 of 18 TDs a year ago.
Now, part of the scales tipping so far in favor of '17 is an inability to run the ball against the Boilermakers last week with anyone other than the QB, with Reggie Bonnafon second to Jackson with 33 yards on six carries in Indianapolis.
Against the Tar Heels, it wasn't nearly as glaring as Malik Williams had 149 yards to Jackson's 132. Granted, 74 of those yards came in the fourth quarter with the game already in hand, but it did mark the first time since the Cardinals' Nov. 17 loss to Houston that someone other than Jackson led the team in rushing.
Bob DonnanBob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports
But through two games, the Cardinals aren't nearly as explosive as in '16, when they scored 70 (Charlotte), 62 (Syracuse), 63 (Florida State) and 59 (Marshall) points before falling to then-No. 5 Clemson 42-36 on the road Oct. 1.
They are of course down receivers James Quick (769 yards and six scores) and Jamari Staples (615 and two TDs) and tight end Cole Hikutini (668 yards and eight TDs), a group that helped the Cardinals produce 23 plays of 40 or more yards (14th in FBS).
Plus, they were backed by a top-15 defense that allowed 322 yards per game.
So far in '17, they have two of those 40-plus yard plays, and both came Saturday with a 75-yard TD strike from Jackson to Jaylen Smith and Williams ripping off that aforementioned run in the fourth quarter.
Meanwhile, the defense, a week after Purdue had 344 yards, gave up 401 vs. the Tar Heels and is allowing 31 points per game, 10 more than at this point in '16.
Maybe the emergence of Williams, who had just two rushes for 17 yards vs. the Boilermakers, will help take pressure off Jackson in the way that Brandon Radcliff did last year, and defensively, there were the positives of North Carolina's two possessions when it was a five-point game in the fourth quarter ending on downs and with a forced fumble.
But the notion that the Cardinals will only go as far as Jackson can take them is about to be truly tested.
Next up for Louisville is defending national champion Clemson and its dominant defensive front. But as Jackson follows a familiar narrative early en route to a 1,000-plus yardage two first games, there's this reminder.
In '16, against a D that was supposed to derail the Cardinals in Week 3, Jackson and Co. embarrassed Florida State to the tune of 63 points and 530 yards.
If the Heisman winner can do that again, given the way Louisville is leaning on him this September, it would be a Hurdle onto itself.