LOUISVILLE, Ky. — The Louisville Cardinals fell to the No. 9 Notre Dame Fighting Irish in its season opener, 35-17, in Louisville head coach Scott Satterfield's debut.
The Cardinals were led by a strong running game led by quarterback Jawon Pass, who carried the ball 16 times for 67 yards and two touchdowns. Freshman Javian Hawkins ran for 114 yards on 18 carries, becoming the first freshman running back to eclipse 100 rushing yards against an FBS opponent since Darius Ashley in 2009.
Pass finished with 134 passing yards with no touchdowns or interceptions, but ball security was an issue for the redshirt junior, who lost three fumbles.
After allowing Notre Dame to march down the field with ease to open up the scoring, the Cardinals responded with a methodical 12-play drive of their own, capped off with an 8-yard touchdown run by Pass. After forcing a Notre Dame punt on the ensuing drive, the Cardinals found the end zone again with Pass scrambling for a 17-yard score to give the Cards their only lead of the game.
The Cardinals only trailed Notre Dame 21-14 heading into halftime after Irish quarterback Ian Book ran in an 11-yard touchdown to give Notre the lead with 17 seconds left in the half. But Notre Dame took control in the second half, keeping Louisville's offense to just a field goal.
The Cardinals will take on Eastern Kentucky at home this Saturday at 7 p.m.