Put the Year of the Cardinal in Your Hands

The Year of the Cardinal Maker's Mark Bottle

The Cardinal Athletic Fund has teamed up with Maker's Mark to raise $1 million for the Academic Center of Excellence, helping U of L student-athletes be as successful academically as they are athletically. Maker's Mark is donating 500 uniquely designed bottles celebrating the Year of the Cardinal; the Sugar Bowl win for Louisville football, reaching the College World Series by the baseball team, getting to the national championship game in women's basketball, and winning it all by the men's basketball team. For a $2,000 investment in the Academic Center, donors not only receive an exclusive and one-of-a-kind commemorative Maker's Mark bottle - personally autographed by Rick Pitino, Jeff Walz and Dan McDonnell - but also will be recognized in a high-profile venue for their contribution and will know that they have made a significant contribution to the future of Cardinal athletics.

Cardinal Athletic Fund members will have priority access to the commemorative bottle in advance of the general public. CAF members may contribute to this campaign beginning December 5, 2013. Any remaining bottles will be available for the public to purchase beginning on December 6, 2013. 100% of the donation will be used to benefit the University of Louisville's new Academic Center of Excellence. These bottles will not be available in stores.

The `Year of the Cardinal' Maker's Mark bottle is a limited edition offering provided by the Kentucky Distillery. Maker's Mark donated the bottles for this project as a special way for Louisville fans to remember the greatest year in college sports history. This bottle is separate from the original series of three Louisville themed bottles Maker's Mark initially announced to be sold in stores. The first of these bottles arrived in July 2012, featuring the image of Louisville's Head Football Coach Charlie Strong. The second in this series hit stores in June 2013 to commemorate Coach Rick Pitino. Details regarding the third bottle in this series have not been released at this time. It will not be available until mid-late 2014, however it will also be sold in stores.


Academic Center for Excellence


Project Overview

The proposed Student-Athlete Academic Center of Excellence is a key component to the continued growth of the University of Louisville Athletics Department. This $14 million dollar state-of-the-art facility will be prominently located at the south end of Papa John's Cardinal Stadium beneath the Norton Terrace, providing ease of access for all of the University's student-athletes. Housing individual tutor rooms, learning labs, and group study areas, this facility will impact over 750 student-athletes across 23 sports on a daily basis. Additionally, the Academic Center of Excellence will serve as home of the athletic department's academic services staff and community outreach programs.


Louisville Student-Athletes


Academic Highlights

Louisville's student-athletes achieved remarkable success in the classroom during the Year of the Cardinal, posting a record 3.124 cumulative GPA for all 23 sports.

A school-best 355 student-athletes earned AD Honor Roll status for the 2012 fall semester (3.0 GPA).

Six different teams posted a perfect score of 1000 in the most recent single-year Academic Progress Rate (APR) data released by the NCAA.

The Spring 2013 semester was the fifth straight time our student-athletes maintained a cumulative GPA above 3.0.

17 of 19 teams had a 3.0 or higher GPA in the Spring 2013 semester.

Men's Basketball earned a record high 15 student-athletes on AD Honor Roll.

Football earned a record high 48 student-athletes on AD Honor Roll.


All questions regarding the new bottles and the Academic Center for Excellence should be directed at the following:
Contact: The CAF Office
Phone: 502-852-8460
Email: CAF@gocards.com

Play Video