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Upcoming FX Drama Might Ruffle Some Feathers. Casting Rumors for Breaking Cardinal Rules.


On the heels of the riveting and entertaining drama, The People v. O.J. Simpson, folks are buzzing about another controversial show FX Network may be considering.  Television audiences looking for the next great American crime story, might be in luck, however it’s the casting choices that will have everyone talking.  Complete with a storyline ripped straight from the headlines, the drama, said to still be in development, exposes the seedy underbelly of college athletics.  Inspired by the infamous book, Breaking Cardinal Rules, the multi-episode series details the salacious sex scandal at the heart of the University of Louisville men’s basketball program.  Producers say the show will be “adrenaline-inducing” and a “whodoneit” intended for mature audiences.  The show will pull back the curtain, allowing viewers a private glimpse into the evidence at the heart of the scandal.  Audiences are taken on a suspense-filled journey, following the leads and the trail of money, all in a race to uncover the real truth and motives behind those involved.  I can imagine the series will be full of thrilling plot twists, involving deceit and betrayal, leaving us all wondering who to trust, and in the end, who’s ultimately to blame.  Each episode will leave viewers on the edge of their seats, steadily building to an unbelievable jaw-dropping climax in the final episode.  Today I envision the All-Star filled cast of actors picked for the series, shown along side the real life cast of characters they are tasked to portray.


Michael Shannon


Award-winning American actor, Michael Shannon stars as Hall of Fame coach Rick Pitino. Nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance in the 2008 drama, Revolutionary Road, audiences might remember him as the cold and calculating General Zod, Superman’s main antagonist, in Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel (2013) or as an agent with a troubling past in HBO series Boardwalk Empire.  The Kentucky native will play the role of the charismatic, manipulative and highly controversial University of Louisville men’s basketball coach, caught in the cross-fire of an lurid NCAA investigation.

David Cross


David Cross is a comedian, writer and actor known for playing oblivious and blundering characters, on both television and film.  He stared in the long-running American sitcom, Arrested Development and the HBO sketch comedy series Mr. Show with Bob and David.  Cross will play the embattled, and floundering leader, with a penchant for faux pas, University of Louisville president, James Ramsey.

Nathan Lane


A versatile actor of the stage, film and television, Nathan Lane received a Tony Award for his portrayal as the greedy and selfish imposter, Max Bialystock in the Mel Brooks Broadway musical, The Producers.  Lane who was recently featured as “Dream Team” attorney, F. Lee Bailey, in The People v. O.J. Simpson, stars as Tom Jurich, the steadfast overseer and University of Louisville Director of Athletics, who’s facing yet another unprecedented scandal to occur under his watch. 

Alfre Woodard


Critically acclaimed actress Alfre Woodard plays Katina Powell, the infamous madam who’s book Breaking Cardinal Rules, exposed the scandal at the heart of the NCAA investigation against the University of Louisville.  Because Powell is a complex and enigmatic character, the role requires a preeminent actor to play her part.  Woodard is the winner of three Screen Actors Guild Awards, a Golden Globe Award, and has been nominated for numerous Emmy Awards, an Academy Award and even a Grammy Award, making her one of the most accomplished and highly sought-after actors of her generation.

Alfonso Ribeiro


Best known as a sitcom actor, Alfonso Ribeiro is remembered for his lovable characters Alfonso Spears in Silver Spoons, and Carlton Banks in The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.  Recently Ribeiro’s shown his talents as a contestant on Dancing With the Stars and now even hosts the somewhat amusing video compilation and poorly titled show, Americas Funniest Videos.  Ribeiro is set to star in the most sobering role of his career, playing graduate assistant Andre McGee the man who purportedly financed and served as the middleman in the sex for hire operation involving Louisville basketball recruits and Powell’s escorts.

Cillian Murphy


Irish actor Cillian Murphy known for his roles in the post apocalyptic film 28 Days Later, and as Scarecrow in Batman Begins, stars as Matt Jones, the plucky blogger, journalist, unabashed University of Kentucky fan, and radio talk show host who learns of the scurrilous allegations against the University of Louisville.  Despite every attempt to discredit him and even attempts to blame him, he vows to expose the corruption and truth at the heart of the Louisville program, even while shadowy figures vilify and threaten him along the way.

Andy Serkis


English actor and Actors Guild Award winner, Andy Serkis is best known for his performance capture characters such as: Gollum in The Lord of the Rings trilogy, Caesar in The Planet of the Apes, and most recently Supreme Leader Snoke in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, stars in his most animated role yet.  Serkis is playing the Louisville Cardinal mascot, who will serve as the narrator for the series.

So, are you excited to see the show?  What are your thoughts on the casting?

Article written by Matthew Mahone

Follow me on Twitter @M_E_Mahone

18 Comments for Upcoming FX Drama Might Ruffle Some Feathers. Casting Rumors for Breaking Cardinal Rules.

  1. RealCatsFan
    8:43 am February 15, 2016 Permalink

    Is this real? If so, they totally missed on the casting if they didn’t get Al Pacino to portray Rick Pitino.

  2. Pitinohater
    8:45 am February 15, 2016 Permalink

    Al Pacino should be the actor playing Rick Pitino. Old enough and creepy looking enough to be perfect.

  3. reedieboy
    8:51 am February 15, 2016 Permalink

    This has to be a joke. No way is this possible

  4. Mathlete
    8:53 am February 15, 2016 Permalink

    This is definitely a joke, but it’s a brilliant one. Poe’s Law is in full effect until the end, Andy Serkis as the cardinal is a great punchline.

  5. kycatman
    9:10 am February 15, 2016 Permalink

    If this is real and I honestly hope it is, please keep us posted as it developes. If it is not real, please try and make it happen!! Can you imagine the viewers all across this great country as they watch these episodes unfold. Please please make it happen!!!

  6. david8577
    9:24 am February 15, 2016 Permalink

    Good stuff Matthew. Man, if only this could happen. People love a good scandal, and this UL scandal is one of the biggest of all time. We all knew that run the Cardinals had didn’t make any sense. Things like Chane picking UL over UK didn’t make any sense. Now it does.

  7. Musehobo
    9:30 am February 15, 2016 Permalink

    *Sigh* I know this will come across as demeaning, but just read the comments above. The reason people can’t tell that this is a joke is because there is no attempt at humor. I get that people SHOULD know that FX wouldn’t do a show on a scandal like this before it’s even played out, or for that matter, that there are a million other (more interesting) ideas out there for shows. But with some of the mindless drivel that network TV spews out, you can’t expect people to get satire when there aren’t any jokes.

    This article was more of an excuse to tag look-a-likes to the characters involved in the scandal. Simply posting the title as “If the UL Scandal was a TV Show” would have made this work.

    • ukjaybrat
      10:31 am February 15, 2016 Permalink

      Satire doesn’t require explicit humor. It appeals to people with a great sense of humor. Some of us are severely lacking in that department.

    • Musehobo
      11:20 am February 15, 2016 Permalink

      You are right that it doesn’t have to be funny. But there needs to be some hidden agenda that bites. Making fun of UL’s scandal only works as satire if it’s funny because we aren’t really trying to make this into a serious issue. I do think the goal was satirical humor; it just didn’t have any.

    • chimichanga
      11:20 am February 15, 2016 Permalink

      The reason people can’t tell this is a joke is because they aren’t bothering to use their damn brains.

      Andy Serkis doing a mocap performance as the Cardinal bird isn’t a joke? of course it is, and it’s a great one.

    • binarysolo
      12:04 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

      Smart humor doesn’t have to hit you over the head with obvious gags. This is a very well written piece, Matthew Mahone, don’t let these mouthbreathers take anything away from it.

      For everyone else: if it’s got a Funkhouser tag, it’s most likely a joke piece.

  8. CPWildcat
    10:15 am February 15, 2016 Permalink

    Now this is funny stuff

  9. RealCatsFan
    11:37 am February 15, 2016 Permalink

    I have a very good sense of humor. It’s just that so much of the stuff surrounding UofL Basketball is such a joke, that it’s hard to tell what’s real and what’s not.

  10. BettyBleedsBlue
    11:45 am February 15, 2016 Permalink

    This cast is awesome! Great job Matthew!

  11. Tom Blevins
    11:46 am February 15, 2016 Permalink

    Funny article, but some of you need to go back and reread the first sentence in it very carefully. Note it says FX network MAY be considering. May, folks, m-a-y. Sorry to burst anyone’s bubble, but such a TV show is as improbable as Donald Trump becoming the next president. (Oh my gosh, there really will be a TV show called Breaking Cardinal Rules!)

  12. Duuuuuude
    12:12 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    Good one Matthew!

  13. CATandMONKEY
    2:20 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    Bravo. Tomlin should be proud. Agree a bit with the poster above regarding Poe’s law except that this is filed under Funkhouser…which negates the use of Poe’s law.

  14. Cheli4UK
    4:29 pm February 15, 2016 Permalink

    Methinks, Alfre Woodard is getting the short end of the stick here.