CRAWFORD MORNING LINE | A big U of L day in NYC, cost of Sugar - WDRB 41 Louisville News

CRAWFORD MORNING LINE | A big U of L day in NYC, the cost of Sugar

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A bit of an abbreviated version this morning, because I'm rambling on the radio on The Early Birds on Sports Radio 790 a.m. in Louisville (tune in, or better yet, give us a call.)

But that doesn't mean there aren't a few items of business, particularly where the University of Louisville is concerned.

It's a big night in the Big Apple for U of L. Athletic director Tom Jurich is up for the AD of the Year Award given by Street & Smith's Sports Business Journal. His primary competition will be the late Mal Moore, Alabama athletic director, who passed away in March.

It's tough to imagine any athletic director having a better year than Jurich had. He negotiated U of L's way into the Atlantic Coast Conference, outflanking a Connecticut program that was expected to be a front-runner for the slot.

His football program won the Sugar Bowl with an upset of Florida, then he managed to fend off a Tennessee run at his head coach, Charlie Strong.

Both his men's and women's basketball teams made their respective Final Fours, and the men and coach Rick Pitino won the school's first NCAA basketball title since 1986.

U of L also has had success in other sports, and has the nation's longest baseball winning streak heading into Big East Conference play.

PITINO ALSO TO BE HONORED IN NYC: While Jurich is attending his awards ceremony on one side of Manhattan, Rick Pitino will be picking up the prestigious Winged Foot Trophy from the New York Athletic Club.

The trophy goes to club members who win the title. Pitino was the first the club honored.

SUGAR BOWL BOTTOM LINE NOT SO SWEET: Jack Coffee of the Louisville Sports Report and Cardinalsports.com had an interesting nugget from Tuesday's U of L Athletic Association meeting.

The board was told that U of L had to lay out $4.5 million in bowl expenses, largely for a block of tickets from the bowl that weren't bought by fans, and will receive only around $2.1 million from the Big East.

It's customary for the Big East to use part of the $17-plus million from the BCS bowl to get its representative at least to the break-even point. U of L, because it is leaving the league, won't get that consideration.

It's a problem with the bowl system. U of L brought 30,000-plus fans to the Sugar Bowl. But fans weren't going to buy inferior seats, and if you can get better on the open market, why buy from the school?

U of L likely will be a part of an effort to improve tickets given to schools by the individual bowls.

TIP OF THE DAY: It's Webcast Wednesday. I'll be hosting our regular Sports Page Live webcast at 10:30 this morning on WDRB.com.

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