Following an abysmal 2-10 season and the firing of Bobby Petrino last year, the Louisville football program has decided to clean the slate and start from scratch moving forward.
Their first step in moving in their desired direction? Hiring former Appalachian State head coach Scott Satterfield.
During ACC Media Days in Charlotte, NC this week, Satterfield turned heads with his brutal honesty about the current state of the Louisville football program. Instead of talking about how much talent he has to work with and how he can unlock some of the potential he has lining the roster, he flat-out said he was disappointed upon arrival.
“We had eight scholarship linemen [when I first showed up],” Satterfield said, via Eric Crawford of WDRB. “That blows my mind. They had 15 receivers on scholarship. Those should be reversed, I think. That was surprising to me.”
In fact, the newest Louisville head coach said that the players at UofL and Appalachian State were currently interchangeable, with Satterfield saying some of the Mountaineers would likely start over the Cardinals at their respective positions.
“That wasn’t the case [that the talent is an upgrade from Appalachian State],” he said. “Some of the talent at App probably would start in front of these guys. And then the other way around with some. I just anticipated these guys would be a lot better, and it wasn’t the case.”
Now, to his credit, Appalachian State finished with a record of 11-2 in 2018 en route to a victory in the R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl. One of their two losses? A 38-45 overtime defeat against No. 9 Penn State in University Park, PA to open the year. The Mountaineers are no slouch.
On the flip side, they are a Sun Belt school and haven’t signed a four-star recruit in the history of their football program. In 2019, they signed the No. 100 recruiting class in the nation (247Sports), followed by No. 113 in 2018 and No. 107 in 2017.
No matter how good Appalachian State has been recently, the talent differential should have been noticeable and rather significant.
To put the icing on the cake, Satterfield added that his mind was “blown” when he found out that Louisville’s players had never been in the coaches’ new offices, let alone their homes for team bonding activities outside of the football field.
“That blows my mind,” Satterfield said. “So the fact that we’re having them over to our houses, and they’re hanging out in our offices, that means a lot to them and to us. We’re with these guys every day, for a long period of time, and we want them to be able to trust us, and we want to be able to trust them. And you do that by having relationships. That’s what it’s all about.”
Louisville wide receiver Seth Dawkins confirmed the head-scratching development at ACC Media Days, saying he never visited a coach’s home under Bobby Petrino.
“In the four years that I’ve been here, I had never been to a coach’s house before,” Dawkins said. “Coach Satt invited us a few times within the first couple of months after he was hired. He opened his home to us, his family to us, and that meant a lot. He may not realize that, but it means a lot, especially to us older players. We just realized that we never had that sort of compassion before from a coach.”