Louisville Senior Scouting
Talk about a historic decline. Lamar Jackson carried this program to great peaks, and his move to the pros left a gaping hole in the offense that Jawon Pass couldn't hope to fill. Beyond that, the Louisville defense became weaker than ever before as they were rattled by injuries and poor play.
This program pushed Clemson to the brink in 2016 where they lost a close one at Memorial Stadium. They almost upset the national champs in their own house. Fast forward two years later. A 51-14 ass-kicking from Alabama set the tone in the season opener, and it would only go downhill from there. The Cardinals went winless in conference. Their two wins on the year came against middling FCS program Indiana State and the eventual 3-9 Western Kentucky Hilltoppers. Here are the final scores of the last seven games of the season.
Louisville loses to Georgia Tech 31-66.
Louisville loses to Boston College 20-38.
Louisville loses to Wake Forest 35-56.
Louisville loses to Clemson 16-77.
Louisville loses to Syracuse 23-54.
Louisville loses to North Carolina State 10-52.
Louisville loses to Kentucky 10-56.
Let those numbers sink in.
Connecticut set the record for most points allowed during a season this past year with a whopping 50.4 average allowed. Over their final seven games the Huskies allowed 338 points. Louisville outpaced them by 61 points allowed over that stretch.
It should come as no shock to you when I say that this defense doesn't have any great NFL prospects. G.G. Robinson, Amonte Caban, and Khane Pass are all likely UDFAs without some serious growth heading into their pro careers. That said, they were all incredibly fun evaluations and I got a lot of joy from watching them get run over by the Georgia Tech offense. By the way, pour one out for the famed triple option leaving town. That team was never great, but they're gonna suck hard in 2019 without it.
Prospects are ranked from best tape grade to worst tape grade. There's almost nothing separating these guys though, so don't take it harsh.
Amonte Caban Edge Rusher
Has experience playing all across the defense from inside linebacker to a hand-in-the-dirt defensive end. Not the longest guy, as he’s only 6’0” with 255 pounds on his frame. Lack of length hurts him when he tries to turn the corner and win at range against offensive tackles. Aggressive tackler who wants to be involved on every chance possible. Tweener qualities are a major concern. Doesn’t have the speed to race running backs to the sideline when working as an off-ball linebacker. Has the strength necessary to meet blockers and hold his ground. Tackle radius is disappointing; short arms prevent him from making difficult plays.
Relies on his power to get free of blockers rather than winning with superior technique. Plays pissed off and scraps with offensive linemen. Stiff mover who is likely to struggle avoiding blocks. Good awareness; doesn’t lose track of the ball. High energy guy who hustles regardless of the game situation. Runs the risk of not finding a position in the pros. Strong finisher when he gets a clean shot at the ball-carrier. Closing speed is average. Not the type of athlete to find success in coverage reps. UDFA Summer Grade.
Seth Dawkins Wide Receiver
Got overpowered at times blocking during the Georgia Tech game. Gets extension and locks out his arms, but could improve his placement. Doesn’t look as thick as his listed 220 pounds, but he certainly looks 6’2”. Gradually started to lose playing time later on during his career at Louisville. Hands are still developing when it comes to fighting away from coverage. Body control along the boundary surpasses expectations; able to toe tap to stay in bounds.
Poor quarterback play likely contributed to a lot of his struggles. Routes lack sharpness to them. Struggles to make hard changes of direction and explode out of them. Catch radius is good enough to make up for bad throws. Long speed is underwhelming. Doesn’t eat up cushion fast enough and put pressure on corners in off coverage. Routes need more nuance and creativity to the setup. UDFA Summer Grade.
G.G. Robinson Defensive Line
Very slender frame for a defensive lineman; lacks mass in his lower half and it shows up in run defense reps. Tends to lose his leverage early on in reps and expose his anchor as a result. Tape is a bit tough to judge because of the Georgia Tech offense, but he seems built for penetration work, not as a two-gapper. Played nose at times even though he’s not stout enough to work there in the pros. Play strength isn’t anything special. Moves decent for a defensive tackle, but his balance could be a concern.
Drew double teams to shut down his quickness. Lost too much ground even in one-on-one situations. Approach with his hands isn’t calculated enough. High effort player who doesn’t lose his gas when getting beat up on. Hustles to get involved and finish gang tackles. Tackle radius is average at best. Tweener qualities are unnerving. Best fit is likely as a 3-tech in the pros. UDFA Summer Grade.
Khane Pass Safety
Listed at 6’1” and 205 pounds and his frame seems to be maxed out already. Willing to pick fights with offensive linemen and get engaged regardless of the size differential. Few examples in coverage due to the matchup against a triple option Georgia Tech offense. Movement skills don’t seem to be a massive plus, but he can keep up with most guys in a foot race. Patient with his assignment and won’t make mistakes by getting overly aggressive. Has the speed needed to beat running backs to the corner and cut them off before they can turn upfield. Angles to the ball need to be more considerate of blockers. Ankle biting style may lead to misses as the game speeds up.
Content to trip runners up rather than take them out. Technique has massive flaws as a tackler. Not cognizant of everything around him; just gets tunnel vision and puts himself into bad spots as a result. Ability to work two deep is an unknown, but it might be possible. Strides are surprisingly short. Not able to make sharp changes of direction smoothly. Too many missed tackles and the number will only grow. True safety; unlikely to find success as a nickel. UDFA Summer Grade.
Let's face the facts. Louisville is likely going to win 2-3 games at max in the ACC this upcoming year. They're going to be a bad football team. But watching their senior defenders was one of the more enjoyable studies I've had this season. Caban plays the hybrid role that Josh Allen did at Kentucky last year. Robinson is limited but his quickness is entertaining. Pass isn't anything special but I'll never be disappointed watching a safety with dreads roam around the field.
I'm going to have to search out a TV on my college campus for when they meet up with Notre Dame in the season opener. It'll be a bloodbath, but I'll enjoy every second of Louisville's 2019 debut.
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