Randy Cross: Jackson Is Really Something To Watch

After dismantling Charlotte and Syracuse by a combined score of 132-42, Louisville finally got its first true test of the season this past Saturday against No. 2 Florida State.

The Cardinals passed with flying colors.

Yes, Louisville utterly embarrassed Florida State, leading 35-10 at halftime, 49-10 through three quarters and ultimately winning 63-20. It was a bloodbath.

Louisville has now won three games by a combined 195-62.

“The whole team has been pretty incredible,” CBS Sports college football and NFL analyst Randy Cross said on CBS Sports Radio’s Gio and Jones. “They’re showing why, especially offensively – and people don’t even talk enough about what they’re doing on the defensive side of the ball. Petrino’s group is really doing some pretty sharp stuff on that side, too, between the strength and speed they have there. But everyone’s concentrated – rightfully so – on Lamar Jackson.”

Jackson finished 13-of-20 for 216 yards, one touchdown and one interception against Florida State. He also rushed 17 times for 146 yards and four touchdowns. On the season, he has completed 61.0 percent of his passes for 913 yards, rushed 49 times for 464 yards (9.5 yards per carry) and has 18 touchdowns (eight pass, 10 rush) to just two interceptions.

He is, without question, the Heisman Trophy frontrunner.

“But isn’t he kind of really the next step in a lot of what we see?” Cross asked. “The analogy has been made to Mike Vick, but this is a kid that’s got really God-blessed talent and speed with his legs, but he’s also a product of the 7-on-7 system. So he’s a guy that’s born and matured and gone through constantly throwing, constantly reading defenses, constantly having that drilled into his head, how the passing game works. You augment that with what he can do with his feet, it’s something. It really is something to watch.”

Louisville, which went from No. 10 to No. 3 in the AP Poll, plays at Marshall (1-1) this Saturday at 8 p.m. ET. Marshall is coming off a 65-38 home loss to Akron.

“The Marshall defense gave up (65) to Akron,” Cross said. “Marshall’s got a pretty potent offense themselves. There might be an all-time record in that stadium next Saturday night. I’m not kidding. It could be like 77-63. It’s going to be wild.”

Florida State (2-1), which dropped to No. 13 in the AP poll, plays at South Florida (3-0) this Saturday at 12 p.m. ET.

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