Saturday’s matchup will be just the second meeting all-time between Louisville and FIU with the Panthers holding a 1-0 advantage. Last season, FIU won the first ever meeting between the two programs taking a 24-17 decision over the Cardinals at Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium. This weekend’s rematch with the Panthers will mark Louisville’s first visit to Miami since winning the 2007 Orange Bowl to close out the 2006 season.
- The Cardinals are 2-0 in the state of Florida under the guidance of head coach Charlie Strong with wins at USF in 2011 and over Southern Miss in the Beef ‘O’ Brady’s Bowl in St. Petersburg in 2010.
- Louisville is 34-25 all-time against current members of the Sun Belt Conference.
- The Cardinals’ Teddy Bridgewater, Michaelee Harris, Corvin Lamb, Jermaine Reve and Eli Rogers all attended Northwestern High School in Miami with FIU’s Kenneth Dillard, E.J. Hilliard, Dominique Rhymes, Billy Rolle, Donald Senat, Clinton Taylor and Wayne Times.
- Louisville defensive line coach Clint Hurtt and FIU head coach Mario Cristobal were on Miami’s staff in 2004 and 2006. In addition, Cristobal was a graduate assistant at Miami while Hurtt was a defensive lineman for the Hurricanes.
Assorted Recent Louisville Results in the State of Florida
- U of L 34, USF 24 (11/25/2011 – Raymond James Stadium – Tampa, Fla.): Louisville got three touchdown passes from freshman quarterback Teddy Bridgewater to defeat South Florida 34-24 and clinch a share of the 2011 BIG EAST championship. Louisville, which rallied from a two-touchdown deficit in the first half, took the lead for good on Bridgewater’s 10-yard pass to DeVante Parker with 9:38 remaining. The Cardinals added to their lead on Dominique Brown’s 9-yard touchdown run with 4:12 remaining. Bridgewater finished the game 19-of-28 for 241 yards passing.
- U of L 31, Southern Miss 28 (12/21/2010 – Tropicana Field – St. Petersburg, Fla.): Justin Burke threw for a pair touchdowns and Jeremy Wright scored on a 95-yard kickoff return to help Louisville beat former Conference USA rival Southern Mississippi 31-28 in the 2010 Beef ‘O’ Brady’s Bowl. Burke tossed scoring passes to 11 yards to Cameron Graham and 10 yards to Josh Chichester while the Cardinals (7-6) erased a 14-point first-half deficit, then produced a go-ahead field goal in the fourth quarter. The win enabled Louisville to finish Charlie Strong’s first season as a head coach with the Cardinals’ first winning record since 2006.
- U of L 24, Wake Forest 13 (1/2/2007 – Dolphin Stadium – Miami, Fla.): Anthony Allen scored two touchdowns, one on a trick play, and Brian Brohm threw for 311 yards to lead Louisville past Wake Forest 24-13 to win the 2007 Orange Bowl. The Cardinals averaged 39 points and ranked second in the nation in total offense this season, but fell behind 13-10 in the final period before their offense went into high gear. Touchdown drives of 81 and 71 yards on consecutive possessions sealed their first win in a major bowl since the 1991 Fiesta Bowl. No. 5 Louisville finished 12-1 to ensure the highest final ranking in school history.
- Miami 41, U of L 38 (10/14/2004 – Orange Bowl – Miami, Fla.): Third-ranked Miami erased a 17-point deficit over the final 20 minutes and came from behind twice in the fourth quarter to beat No. 17 Louisville 41-38 in a nationally televised Thursday night showdown. Brock Berlin threw three touchdown passes and directed the winning drive, a 56-yard march capped by Frank Gore’s 1-yard run with 49 seconds left. The touchdown capped a seesaw fourth quarter. Devin Hester scored on a 78-yard punt return to put Miami ahead 34-31, but Louisville regained the lead when freshman backup quarterback Brian Brohm directed an 80-yard touchdown drive. Stefan LeFors threw three touchdown passes for Louisville before departing with an injury in the fourth quarter.