LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Enjoy this edition of Hot Take Tuesday for Oct. 17, 2017, and feel free to share your own by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org:
Kent Taylor, Sports Director (Follow on Twitter)
What was Rick Pitino's ultimate downfall at UofL? Instead of taking the time to interview for an assistant coaching position, he hired Jordan Fair. Yes, Pitino's track record of turning assistants into head coaches is unparalleled, but was Fair really qualified, or did Pitino just want to avoid sifting through the resumes and interview requests a position on his staff would surely generate? My guess is he thought he could turn any coach into a good coach. He may be right, but in this case, the guy he brought on allegedly looked at the rules as though they were optional. Maybe Pitino can put up a good enough fight to save some of his reputation, but if he works again, he might want to do a better job of vetting his hires.
John Boel, Anchorman (Follow on Twitter)
What's happening with UofL football is the same thing that's happened with Green Bay: A squandering of elite quarterback play. Two-time MVP Aaron Rodgers is in his 13th season with the Packers. They've made one Super Bowl. Heisman Trophy winner Lamar Jackson is in his third season at UofL. The Cards made it to a No. 3 ranking once, but that was short-lived and the window is closing. He puts up 500 yards of offense each week but he doesn't play defense and he's not in charge of making sure 11 defensive players are on the field, which seems to be difficult these days.
Oops, there goes another year on the Rodgers window.
William Leiss, Research Director
The groundwork is being laid and the drum beat is getting going for Ohio State making the College Football Playoff no matter what, even with a loss or two, and even ahead of more deserving teams. Multiple pundits over the weekend made the rounds on the TV studio shows and radio shows justifying why Ohio State is a Top 4 team. It seems like there is a pre-determined effort being put toward getting bluebloods like Ohio State over the top, something I doubt would be afforded to less historically prestigious schools.
Annie Moore, Digital Content Producer (Follow on Twitter)
The USMNT missing the World Cup, while painful now, will be good for the program in the long term. When all of the best soccer teams in the gather for the World Cup in Russia next year, it will no doubt sting here stateside. But sometimes a complete, hard reset is what a program needs to build a foundation for future success. Let Clint Dempsey, Tim Howard and the stalwarts of old U.S. soccer ride off into the sunset and make way for the new-look Yanks. With a new manager and a wealth of young talent, look out, Qatar 2022.
John P. Wise, Director of Digital Media (Follow on Twitter)
Some like to complain that President Donald Trump is the reason why Americans are divided. I disagree. He probably exploited our capacity for divisiveness, but it's been a deeply-rooted problem for a long time now. And I attribute that in large part to the 24-hour media cycle. Cable networks are jammed with endless hours of debate shows that deepen the conflict. I also blame radio guys like Matt Jones, whose blog and Twitter timeline are a celebration of the downfall of Rick Pitino, and that feels gross. Is there a skeez factor with this entire UofL mess? Of course there is and the university is taking the first steps toward recovering from it. I don't -- and nobody should -- feel sympathy for Pitino, but to gleefully devote hours of merrymaking to another human being's professional suicide is nothing short of disgusting, and is a great way to wake up the karma gods.
Scott Reynolds, Anchorman (Follow on Twitter)
A few weeks ago, David Padgett might have wondered when he would get a head coaching job, maybe at a school such as Akron. Now he has the reins of his alma mater. And don't be surprised if he matches or beats last year's record of 25-9. That, plus something special like beating Kentucky or a nice tournament run, if the Cards are allowed in, and the job is his. Forget about his age. He knows basketball and he's respected. It's 80 percent recruiting anyway.
William Joy, Reporter (Follow on Twitter)
Why is anyone surprised by the Boston College loss? In what game this season did Louisville prove it was good? The Cards' only win against a team with a winning record was when they struggled past Purdue (now 3-3) in the season opener. Sure they looked good last year, but how is the BC loss a surprise? At this point, a bowl game for Louisville would be the surprise. For the bettors out there, Louisville is 1-6 against the spread, which is not great. Apart from the fact that the defense couldn't stop a nosebleed, part of the reason UofL fans' surprise comes from the hype of Lamar Jackson. Last year's Heisman Trophy winner has a 60-percent completion percentage, good enough for 70th in the nation. Seventieth. His passer rating is 26th. Sure, he runs the ball well, but he's not even the best running quarterback in the nation. That would be Khalil Tate of Arizona, who, I should add, has also thrown better than Jackson. No. 8 either ran or threw on more than 80 percent of Louisville's plays against Boston College, so yeah, he accounted for 80 percent of Louisville's yards. That doesn't mean he's incredible. It means he's used a lot. But he's incredibly inconsistent. When an inconsistent player is the heart and soul of your team, it shouldn't be a surprise that the team is also inconsistent. The guy is equally likely to run 80 yards as to throw a backbreaking interception. Louisville has a series of issues, and while Jackson is a bright spot, he's not bright enough to carry the entire team.