Maybe Chane Behanan will be remembered like Joe Namath boldly guaranteeing an unlikely Super Bowl win. Maybe he'll be ridiculed like Jon Kitna after declaring the 2007 Detroit Lions a 10-win team.
Either way, the Louisville freshman probably would be wise to keep his brash predictions to himself in the future.
Asked after Louisville's victory over Memphis on Saturday about whether the Cardinals proved they're deserving of their top-five ranking, Behanan matter-of-factly suggested they're even better than that.
"We're the No. 1 team in the country in my eyes," Behanan told reporters in Louisville. "We're going undefeated. Point blank, period."
Louisville coach Rick Pitino probably won't be pleased at Behanan giving Kentucky and other future opponents bulletin board material, but this is hardly the first example of a freshman spouting off before experiencing his first taste of conference play.
Ex-Oregon standout Malik Hairston famously predicted he would "Carmelo-ize" the Ducks by taking them to the national title as a freshman. Former UCLA stars Jordan Farmar and Arron Afflalo both thought they could lead the Bruins to a Final Four as freshmen only to have that season end with a first-round NCAA loss. And Memphis' Will Barton guaranteed a national championship to a group of boosters as a freshman but the Tigers barely made the NCAA tournament at all.
Behanan's Cardinals have the depth to make a run at the Final Four once freshman Wayne Blackshear gets healthy, but an undefeated season in the rugged Big East would be a highly improbable feat. Heck, just getting to January without a loss would be an achievement since Georgetown and Kentucky await.
There are only two ways this can end for Behanan. Either he'll take some ridicule from opposing fans after his team's first loss, or he'll be the toast of Louisville after the Cardinals cut down the nets in New Orleans.
(Thanks, Card Chronicle)
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