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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The impact of the Sugar Bowl win extends further than the football field. The national exposure could pay off for U of L and the entire community.
The big buzz from the Cardinals' victory in the Sugar Bowl could translate into big bucks for the university and for the city.
The Cardinal Hall of Fame Cafe is dedicated to all things U of L. Today, the lunchtime crowd was still feasting on gator. "I saw an unprepared Florida team that I think took Louisville for granted. And Louisville came out prepared and ready to play," said Jeff Workinger.
"Bridgewater could be the next Heisman Trophy winner. We'll see. He's good," said Pat Humkey.
"Everybody predicted Florida to win last night, had no confidence in us. But we went out on that field and showed them exactly how we play," said Juanita Rutledge.
The university is already thinking through the best way to harness that Sugar Bowl excitement. "National attention is important when our sports teams do amazing," said Alyssa Murphy, U of L's associate director of admissions.
She says the great showing in the Sugar Bowl will result in more visits from prospective students: "Which generally translates into falling in love with campus, seeing the changes that have been happening here, and really learning about our academic profile and our academic success, which then means more students to U of L, and that's really something that we're excited about."
Karl Schmitt of the Louisville Sports Commission is a marketing pro, who says the university and the city could not buy the kind of exposure they received from the Sugar Bowl. "It's an enormous opportunity for the community to send a message out," said Schmitt. "Sports is a great brand and a great brand builder. Because most of the time, things that are surrounding sports are positive. And its fun. And it's uplifting. And people like being associated with those things."
So, it's clear that Sugar Bowl victory could taste sweet for a long time to come.