NCAA Basketball American Athletic Conference BasketballLouisville Cardinals

Louisville Cardinals Are On Fire

Jamie Rhodes-USA TODAY Sports

The Louisville Cardinals lit up the Houston Cougars 91-52 on Thursday evening. The Cougars never stood a chance against the reigning National Champions. Senior Luke Hancock was able to extend his double-digit scoring streak to five games. Hancock has had the hot hand for the Cardinals since entering conference play. He has averaged 16.8 points during that span. His 10 points on the evening were a far cry short of his career high 23 points, but he had help.

Senior guard Russ Smith continues to make a case for being the best guard in the American Athletic ConferenceSmith had an efficient 18 points. Smith’s hot hand paced the Cardinals to their victory. Junior reserve Wayne Blackshear had a game-high 23 points to keep the Cougars from sniffing a close contest. Smith and Blackshear were a combined 9-of-11 from 3-point range.

Aside from a gut-wrenching loss to MemphisLouisville has been lights out in conference play. The Cardinals have taken every opponent to the woodshed, and are two days away from proving that they are still the class of the conference. If Louisville can continue to play at the level that they are at, there is no reason to believe that the Cardinals cannot get hot and make a run at the ever-elusive repeat.

Louisville still has five big match ups remaining in conference play. The Cardinals can shoot 53.6 percent from 3-point range on a consistent basis. The fact that Louisville has ironed out their kinks so early in the season should strike fear into the hearts of the rest of the conference.

Jack Dooley is a Big 12 Basketball writer for Rant Sports. You can follow him on Twitter @JackDooleyOCS.