Louisville–Virginia rivalry

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Louisville Cardinals–Virginia Cavaliers
Louisville Cardinals Logo  Virginia Cavaliers Logo
Basketball Series Virginia leads, 5–3
Latest Meeting February 17, 1990
Latest Result #18 Louisville 72, Virginia 56
Next Meeting February 7, 2015
Football Series Virginia leads, 2–1
Latest Meeting September 13, 2014
Latest Result Virginia 23, #21 Louisville 21
Next Meeting 2015

The Louisville–Virginia rivalry refers to a new Atlantic Coast Conference designated cross-divisional rivalry between the Cardinals of the University of Louisville and Cavaliers of the University of Virginia. Before 2014, the two schools had not met in twenty-five years in either men's basketball and football, in both cases last meeting during the 1989–90 school year. The rivalry has come about because of the imminent departure of the Maryland Terrapins, Virginia's former cross-divisional rival, from the ACC to the Big Ten Conference. Louisville took Maryland's place in the ACC's rivalry matchups to be placed against Virginia and Pittsburgh.

Although their shared history is limited, the two schools shared several intense men's basketball matchups in the 1980s with national implications. Though these previous games were played in Freedom Hall and University Hall, the two teams will now play in two of the five largest basketball arenas of the 15-member ACC: the 14,593 capacity on-campus John Paul Jones Arena at U-Va. and the 22,090 capacity KFC Yum! Center in downtown Louisville.

Both programs are major modern powers in college baseball, each being a part of the 2014 College World Series as well as several prior CWS events each. Louisville is also a major basketball power, with Virginia challenging for such notoriety with its 2014 ACC Men's Basketball Tournament Championship and 30-win season. Approximately three months prior to Louisville joining the ACC on July 1, 2014, the two programs were both part of the Sweet Sixteen in the 2014 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament.

Men's basketball[edit]

1982: #3 Virginia 74, #17 Louisville 56[edit]

Virginia, led by center Ralph Sampson, dictated the tempo of a game at Freedom Hall where he faced off with such athletic Louisville greats as Rodney McCray. His brother Scooter McCray grabbed ten rebounds, the same as Sampson, and Louisville overall outrebounded the Cavaliers 32–21. But Virginia held Louisville to 40% field goal shooting, while making over 50% of their own shots. Moreover, Virginia forced 16 Louisville turnovers and committed only 11 on their end. Jerry Eaves scored 21 for Louisville, but Sampson had 26 for Virginia, while future Virginia coach Jeff Jones added 17. The game was in some doubt until Virginia closed with an 18–6 run in the last five minutes of play. Despite the lopsided outcome of the game, Louisville would later advance to the Final Four while top-ranked Virginia would fall in a great upset to the UAB Blazers in the Sweet Sixteen.

1983: #6 Virginia 98, #8 Louisville 81[edit]

Sampson had one of the finest games of his college career, making a statement in a game between two Top 10 teams nationally televised from University Hall. Highly touted Louisville was never really in the game, as Sampson exploded for 35 points, 12 rebounds, and 5 blocked shots while going 14-for-18 from the field. Louisville would have the last laugh, however, ending the season ranked #2 to Virginia's #3, and advancing to the Final Four for the second straight year while Virginia was upset again in an earlier round, this time by eventual champions NC State. Virginia would itself journey to the Final Four for the second time in four seasons the following year, without Sampson.

The Houston Rockets, with two of the top three picks in the 1983 NBA Draft, would take both Sampson (#1 overall) and Rodney McCray (#3 overall) with these picks after the end of the season.

1989: #13 Louisville 74, Virginia 71[edit]

The Cardinals, not the Cavaliers, now enjoyed the services of one of college basketball's most celebrated centers in the late 1980s. Pervis Ellison quietly controlled the game down low against the Cavaliers, scoring 14 points, pulling down 7 rebounds, and blocking 4 Virginia shots. After freshman Bryant Stith pulled Virginia close with a three-point play late in the game, "Never Nervous" Pervis' own three-point play gave Louisville a five-point lead with a minute and a half to play, and highly ranked Louisville held on against an unranked Virginia team visiting Freedom Hall.

All records[edit]

Virginia victories are shaded ██ navy blue. Louisville victories are shaded ██ red.

Date Site Winning team Losing team Series
February 13, 1924 Louisville, KY Virginia 41 Louisville 26 Virginia 1–0
1947 Jefferson County Armory • Louisville, KY Louisville 69 Virginia 43 Virginia 1–1
January 24, 1982 Freedom Hall • Louisville, KY Virginia 74 Louisville 56 Virginia 2–1
January 29, 1983 University Hall • Charlottesville, VA Virginia 98 Louisville 81 Virginia 3–1
February 11, 1984 Freedom Hall • Louisville, KY Virginia 50 Louisville 45 Virginia 4–1
February 9, 1985 University Hall • Charlottesville, VA Virginia 74 Louisville 65 Virginia 5–1
January 4, 1989 Freedom Hall • Louisville, KY Louisville 74 Virginia 71 Virginia 5–2
February 17, 1990 University Hall • Charlottesville, VA Louisville 72 Virginia 56 Virginia 5–3
February 7, 2015 John Paul Jones Arena • Charlottesville, VA TBD TBD TBD
March 7, 2015 KFC Yum! Center • Louisville, KY TBD TBD TBD