GREENSBORO, N.C. — Louisville wide receiver DeVante Parker and defensive end Lorenzo Mauldin spoke with reporters on Day 1 of the ACC Kickoff. Here are a few nuggets we learned about the Cardinals today.
•Mauldin was pegged as a leader by new coach Bobby Petrino immediately. Petrino pulled Mauldin aside and spoke with him on his first day in town. He spoke with Mauldin before he addressed the rest of the team, and he told the defensive end that he’s needed to be a leader for this team. Petrino also chose Mauldin to debut Louisville’s new all-black uniforms.
•Mauldin dyed the ends of his hair red for his final season.
— ACC Sports (@ACCSports) July 20, 2014
•Mauldin is moving to a stand-up defensive end position this year in Louisville’s 3-4 defense. He said that his responsibility will be “half-and-half” between rushing the passer and dropping back in coverage. He believes he’ll be used primarily as a pass-rusher in zone blitzes and boundary blitzes in critical situations.
•There were three teams that Mauldin was particularly interested in playing now that the Cardinals are in the ACC: Florida State, Clemson and Notre Dame. He’s especially excited about Notre Dame. ”I’ve seen movies like Rudy, and I’ve always wanted to play against Notre Dame. I’ve wanted to see what Notre Dame was about,” Mauldin said. Parker said he’s most excited about going to Death Valley to play Clemson.
•Mauldin said the best attribute Louisville has going for it this year is speed. He added that the 3-4 defense highlights that speed.
•Speaking of speed, Parker said he clocked a sub-4.4 40-yard dash this offseason. He said his goal is to reach the 4.2s at some point this season.
•Mauldin mentioned Keith Brown, B.J. Dubose, Sheldon Rankins, DeAngelo Brown and Trevon Young as players who will break through and have big seasons this year. He also said he’s expecting big things out of sophomore safety Gerod Holliman.