Sun Belt Conference Weekly News and Notes (Week 9)
2012 Sun Belt Conference Media Guide
2012 Sun Belt Conference Composite Schedule
2012 Sun Belt Conference Standings
2012 Sun Belt Conference Statistics
ULM Takes Top Spot in Sun Belt; Sun Belt Showdown Set for Tuesday on ESPN2
In what will go down as one of the greatest games in Sun Belt football history, Louisiana-Monroe erased a 28-7 second quarter deficit as the Warhawks rallied for a 43-42 win in overtime Saturday in front of a sellout crowd at Western Kentucky.
ULM quarterback Kolton Browning once again showed his composure despite throwing two interceptions against WKU. Browning finished the game with 22 completions (41 attempts) for 308 yards and four touchdown passes, he also rushed 17 times for 69 yards and
two scores. Browning threw a pair of TDs in the fourth quarter, the first tied the game at 28, while the second tied the game at 35 with 31 seconds to play. In overtime, trailing 42-35, Kolton Browning hit Je’Ron Hamm for a 20-yard pass to set up 1st and goal.
On 2nd and goal, Browning scored from three yards out. ULM opted for the two-point conversion and the win. The Warhawks were successful as Browning hit Rashon Ceaser for the 43-42 win. The win moves the Warhawks to 5-2 on the season and 3-0 in Sun Belt play.
ULM is now the lone unbeaten in Sun Belt play and is tied with WKU with the best overall mark.
For the Hilltoppers, the loss is just the third for WKU in its last 15 games dating back to last season, but it did snap their nine-game Sun Belt Conference win streak. That streak was tied for the second-longest active streak in the nation entering the
For the second consecutive Tuesday the Sun Belt will be featured in primetime on ESPN2. Louisiana-Lafayette will be playing on its second consecutive Tuesday when they face Arkansas State at Cajun Field.
* Middle Tennessee 34, FIU 30 - 5 p.m.
* Arkansas State 36, South Alabama 29 - 6 p.m.
* Louisiana-Monroe 35, Florida Atlantic 14 (Sun Belt Network) - 7 p.m.
* North Texas 30, Louisiana-Lafayette 23 (ESPN2) - 8 p.m.
* Troy 38, FIU 37 (Sun Belt Network) - 12 p.m.
* South Alabama 37, Florida Atlantic 34 (2OT) - 2:30 p.m.
* Louisiana-Monroe 43, Western Kentucky 42 (OT) (ESPN3) - 3 p.m.
#15 Mississippi State 45, Middle Tennessee 3 (ESPN2) - 6 p.m.
* Arkansas State at Louisiana-Lafayette (ESPN2) - 7 p.m.
* North Texas at Middle Tennessee (ESPN3) - 2:30 p.m.
* Troy at Florida Atlantic - 4 p.m.
* Western Kentucky at FIU (ESPN3) - 5 p.m.
* South Alabama at Louisiana-Monroe - 6 p.m.
* Middle Tennessee at Western Kentucky (ESPNU) - 8:15 p.m.
Florida Atlantic at Navy (CBS Sports Network) - 2:30 p.m.
* FIU at South Alabama - 2:30 p.m.
* Arkansas State at North Texas - 4 p.m.
* Louisiana-Lafayette at Louisiana-Monroe (Sun Belt Network) - 3 p.m.
Troy at Tennessee - TBA
Week Eight Sun Belt Conference Football Players of the Week – As selected by the Sun Belt media panel
Offensive Player of the Week
Offensive Player of the Week
Kolton Browning (Louisiana-Monroe, Jr., QB)
Junior QB Kolton Browning helped ULM erase a 28-7 second quarter deficit as ULM rallied for a 43-42 win in overtime Saturday at Western Kentucky… Browning finished the game with 22 completions (41 attempts) for 308 yards and four touchdown passes, he also rushed
17 times for 69 yards and two scores… Browning closed the gap to 14 with a 20-yard TD run with 3:20 to play until halftime and ULM moved within a score of the Hilltoppers as Browning hit Cortney Davis with a floater on an all-out blitz as time expired in the
first half… Browning threw a pair of TDs in the fourth quarter, the first tied the game at 28, while the second tied the game at 35 with 31 seconds to play… In overtime, trailing 42-35, Kolton Browning hit Je’Ron Hamm for a 20-yard pass to set up 1st and goal…
On 2nd and goal, Browning scored from three yards out… ULM opted for the two-point conversion and the win… The Warhawks were successful as Browning hit Rashon Ceaser for the 43-42 win.
Defensive Player of the Week
Zach Orr (North Texas, Jr., LB)
Orr led the North Texas defensive effort with nine tackles and had a key interception to help North Texas to a 30-23 win over the Ragin’ Cajuns. After ULL scored on its opening possession of the game North Texas was in need of some momentum and Orr intercepted
a Terrance Broadway pass that led to the Mean Green’s first points of the game. Orr currently ranks second in the conference in total tackles and is tied for sixth in interceptions.
Special Teams Player of the Week
Pat Moore (South Alabama, Jr., DE/LB)
Moore blocked two field-goal attempts, one in the final seconds of regulation and another in the second overtime, to help lead the Jaguars to a three-point double-overtime victory over FAU. The first block came after the Owls had moved 46 yards in eight plays
down to the USA-15, preventing FAU from claiming the win in regulation with a 32-yard field goal. After opened the second extra period with a tackle for a two-yard loss, Moore deflected FAU’s 44-yard attempt to take the lead, allowing the Jaguars to pick up
the win four plays later. In addition to the two blocks — the first time in school history that a player has been credited with more than one in a game — the junior had three tackles solo tackles, all behind the line of scrimmage including a sack.
Around the Sun Belt Conference
Sun Belt Future is Bright
“This is a conference on the rise. You can really sense the momentum that the conference has.” - Arkansas State head coach Gus Malzahn
“In my mind, the Sun Belt came out as a big winner in realignment and conference shuffling. Adding Georgia State, Texas State and UT Arlington clearly put the Sun Belt in a strong position for the future. The competitive gap between us and others has shrunk
considerably. The Sun Belt is poised to contend to become the best of the so-called non-AQ conferences, which are our peer conferences.” - Sun Belt Conference Commissioner Karl Benson
“Everybody is getting better. Everybody is recruiting hard, and everybody is hiring good coaches. There’s great coaches across the field and have been for years.” - Troy head coach Larry Blakeney
“One of messages across the league is why not be that team that takes center stage? That is the next Boise State? To play on New Year’s Day in a big bowl against a big opponent and bring credit to the university and to the Sun Belt. There’s no doubt in my
mind that there is a team in the Sun Belt that will achieve that in the next two to three to five years.”- Sun Belt Conference Commissioner Karl Benson
“Athletic directors and people across the country are saying, ‘Hey, they play a great brand football in the Sun Belt Conference.’" - Louisiana-Lafayette head coach Mark Hudspeth
“Each year we’re getting more established, we’re building better facilities, we’re recruiting better players,” - Middle Tennessee Head Coach Rick Stockstill
“This conference probably is more even than any conference in the country. There’s just about every team in this conference I feel like if it gets on a roll has the ability to make a run for the championship if not finish in the top 3 every year.” - Louisiana-Lafayette
head coach Mark Hudspeth
“The conference is getting better as we go. I think our presidents have done a great job. Everyone is looking better.” - Western Kentucky head coach Willie Taggart
WKU, ULM Top SEC Foes
ULM defeated then #8 ranked Arkansas on September 8 and WKU followed up with a win over Kentucky on September 15. The two wins against SEC programs were the first for both institutions, it also marked the first time that Sun Belt Conference has had wins against
the SEC in back-to-back weeks. ULM’s win over Arkansas also marked the first time that a Sun Belt Conference team has defeated a top-ten ranked opponent.
ULM’s Browning Tabbed Walter Camp National Offensive Player of the Week
After leading ULM to 34-31 upset of No. 8 Arkansas Saturday in overtime, junior quarterback Kolton Browning has been named the Walter Camp Football Foundation Offensive Player of the Week. Browning tallied 481 yards of total offense and his 16 yard run to the
endzone in overtime gave the Warhawks their first-ever win over Arkansas and their first-win over a ranked opponent (as a FBS member). Browning set new career-highs in passing yards (412), completions (42) and attempts (67). The junior also registered a total
of 83 plays which ranks second in ULM history for a single-game.
Cunningham Garners National Award
Middle Tennessee senior running back Benny Cunningham was named the AT&T All-America National Player of the Week on Thursday night for his performance in the win at Georgia Tech. ESPN analysts select four players each week and then fan votes determine the overall
Cunningham set several career-highs in the upset win over Georgia Tech, including 217 yards rushing, scoring five touchdowns, carrying the pigskin 27 times and registering a career-long 60-yard run. The 60-yard touchdown run was the longest by the Blue Raiders
since D.D. Kyles raced 74 yards against Louisiana in 2010. Cunningham’s five rushing touchdowns tied for the second most in a game at Middle Tennessee and moved him to No. 3 nationally in scoring.
Sun Belt Sends Three to Bowls in 2011
The Sun Belt Conference has sent three teams to postseason bowl games for two consecutive seasons. Following the 2011 regular season, Louisiana-Lafayette played in the R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl, FIU played in the Beef ‘O’ Brady’s Bowl and Arkansas State
played in the GoDaddy.com Bowl. The three teams playing in the 2011 football postseason matches the previous high set the year prior. ASU, FIU, ULL and Western Kentucky all finished the 2011 regular season with bowl eligible records, marking the fourth time
in league history that the Sun Belt has had four bowl eligible teams.
South Alabama Makes Sun Belt Debut
South Alabama will open the 2012 season on Aug. 30 against Texas San-Antonio where it will make its Sun Belt Conference and FBS debut. The Jaguars will not be eligible for the Sun Belt Conference championship, however, they will play a full Sun Belt schedule
where their games will count as conference games for their league opponents. USA will be eligible for the Sun Belt title and a bowl berth in the 2013 season.
Bowl Game Winning Percentage
Since the 2007 football season the Sun Belt Conference ranks fifth out of the 11 FBS conferences in postseason bowl game winning percentage. In fact, the Sun Belt Conference ranks ahead of noted “Big Six” leagues – the ACC, Pac-12 and the Big Ten. Furthermore,
the Sun Belt Conference outpaces its non-automatic qualifying BCS partners in the WAC, Conference USA and the MAC.
Cristobal Continues to Build FIU
FIU’s Mario Cristobal is undoubtedly one of the hottest rising coaches in college football, taking over the FIU program in 2007 after spending time on Greg Schiano's staff at Rutgers (2001-2003) and Larry Coker's staff at Miami (2004-2006). Cristobal led the
Panthers to their first winning season in program history in 2010, winning a share of the Sun Belt Championship and then the Little Caesars Bowl. FIU also finished 8-5 in 2011 and received a bid to the Beef 'O' Brady's Bowl. Cristobal has shown dedication
to the Miami community as he was raised there, played, coached and earned his B.A. and M.A. degrees at the University of Miami and has been FIU’s head coach for five seasons.
Trojan Trio Wins Super Bowl Title
The Trojan Trio of Jerrel Jernigan , Lawrence Tynes and Osi Umenyiora are Super Bowl Champions after the New York Giants defeated the New England Patriots 21-17 in Super Bowl XLVI. The title is the second for both Tynes and Umenyiora and the first for Jernigan.
Troy's three former players in the Super Bowl (active rosters) were the fifth most of any school in the country.
Tynes, who sent the Giants to the Super Bowl with a game-winning field goal in overtime of the NFC Championship Game, booted field goals of 38 and 33 yards in the third quarter to pull New York within two, 17-15.
Jernigan, who in 2010 led the Trojans to their fifth consecutive Sun Belt Conference title, set up Tynes' first field goal with a 34-yard kickoff return. The rookie finished the game with three returns for 71 yards (23.7 per return).
Umenyiora finished the game with one tackle and a pair of hits on New England quarterback Tom Brady.
Sun Belt Football Championship Trophy to Honor Waters
The annual winner of the Sun Belt Conference’s football regular season will take home the H. Wright Waters Trophy as the league approved the honor at the 2012 Sun Belt Conference Spring Meetings.
Waters served as Commissioner of the Sun Belt Conference from 1998 through 2012 and largely responsible for football becoming a league sponsored sport. The Sun Belt had been a viable entity on the nation’s collegiate athletic map since its founding in 1976,
but Waters made the call for a serious approach to gaining access to the Football Bowl Subdivision. Due to his leadership the league played its inaugural season under his watch in 2001.
Malzahn Returns Home to Take Over at Arkansas State
Gus Malzahn was named the Red Wolves' 28th head football coach last December, bringing him back to his home state after most recently enjoying highly successful stints as a top assistant coach at three NCAA FBS universities that garnered national acclaim. Malzahn
comes to Arkansas State after serving as the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at Auburn for the past three seasons. A native of Fort Smith, Malzahn was named the winner of the 2010 Frank Broyles Award, given annually to the nation's top collegiate
His innovative offense made an immediate and profound impact during his tenure at Auburn, highlighted by a record-setting offense in 2010 when the Tigers finished 14-0 and claimed the school's first national championship since 1957. Malzahn's record-setting
offense in 2010 led the Southeastern Conference and finished in the top 10 nationally in six statistical categories. He coached Heisman Trophy winner Cam Newton during the Tigers run to the 2011 BCS National Championship. Under Malzahn's direction, Newton
later became the overall No. 1 pick in the 2011 NFL Draft after producing one of the best single-season quarterback performances in collegiate history.
Before coaching at Auburn, Malzahn spent two seasons at Tulsa, coordinating a Golden Hurricane offense that finished first nationally in total offense in 2007 and 2008. Prior to his time at Tulsa, he coached one season at Arkansas, where he served as offensive
coordinator, coached Heisman Trophy runner-up Darren McFadden and helped the Razorbacks finish fourth nationally in rushing offense at 228.5 yards per game. ?
Carl Pelini Begins New Era at Florida Atlantic
Carl Pelini was named Florida Atlantic's second head coach in program history to replace the retired Howard Schnellenberger and brings more than 25 years of football experience to Boca Raton.
The Ohio native was a defensive coordinator at Minnesota State Mankato (2004) and helped revitalize a struggling program at Ohio University where he was the defensive line coach for three seasons (2005-07). In 2008, he moved to Nebraska and assumed the position
of defensive coordinator and defensive line coach. Pelini's role in the resurgence of Nebraska's defense has been recognized by his two-time nomination for the Frank Broyles Assistant Coach of the Year Award.
Prior to his time in the collegiate ranks, Pelini spent more than 10 years at the high school level.
Sun Belt Conference Bowl Partners
The Sun Belt Conference is currently in the third year of four year partnerships with the GoDaddy.com Bowl and the R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl. Sun Belt teams will continue to represent the league in the games following the 2012 and 2013 regular seasons.
WKU and Taggart Agree to New Contract
Willie Taggart, who guided WKU to the biggest one-season improvement in league wins in Sun Belt Conference history in only the program’s third season competing at the Football Bowl Subdivision level, has agreed to a new four-year contract. The contract began
on January 1, 2012 and includes an automatic one-year rollover each year through 2019. WKU’s 7-1 conference record in 2011 after a 2-6 league record a year ago stands as the biggest one-season improvement in Sun Belt Conference history. Taggart leads WKU into
2012 with a seven-game conference winning streak, the fifth-longest current streak in the country.
Sun Belt and ESPN Announce Multiyear Agreement
The Sun Belt Conference and ESPN reached a new agreement that extends the network’s relationship with the conference through the 2019-20 academic year. The agreement, which will take effect beginning in the 2012-13 academic year, will expand the conference’s
national television exposure and makes ESPN the exclusive national cable and satellite provider of the Sun Belt Conference. The new agreement will give Sun Belt Conference football a minimum of two games on either ESPN or ESPN2 and also a minimum of five games
on ESPNU that will be scheduled for Thursday or Friday nights. Additionally, ESPN Regional Television will have the right to produce, distribute and syndicate up to five football games each year. ESPN, ESPN2, and ESPNU, the 24-hour college sports network,
will also be granted additional opportunities to select games to air. This trio of networks will be granted a 12-day rolling window during the season to select additional games to televise. Games available for selection are after the third Saturday of the
Cajuns Grab Top Attendance Increase in NCAA
The Ragin’ Cajuns football team added yet another honor to its list as the NCAA announced that the University of Louisiana-Lafayette had the top attendance increase for the 2011 season.
The Cajuns had an average increase of 11,788 per game setting both the Sun Belt Conference average and total attendance record and the ULL average attendance record. ULL beat out Arizona State, Stanford, Iowa State, Temple, Florida State and Oklahoma State
for the top honor.
Troy’s Chip Reeves Added to Biletnikoff Award List
Troy wide receiver Chip Reeves has been added to the Biletnikoff Award watch list, the Tallahassee Quarterback Club Foundation announced Tuesday morning. Reeves was one of 11 players to be added to the award watch list; the Biletnikoff Award is presented annually
to the nation’s top wide receiver.
ASU’s Aplin Named Senior Class Award Finalist
Arkansas State senior quarterback Ryan Aplin was named as one of 10 finalists for the prestigious 2012 Senior CLASS Award, annually recognizing an NCAA FBS senior with notable achievements in areas of community, classroom, character and competition. The finalists
were chosen by a media committee from the list of 30 candidates announced in September. Nationwide fan voting begins immediately to help select the winner. Fans are encouraged to vote on the Senior CLASS Award Web site through Dec. 3. Fan votes will be combined
with media and NCAA FBS head head coaches’ votes to determine the winner.
ULM’s Browning Added to Maxwell Award List
The Maxwell Football Club today announced the expansion of its 2012 Watch List for the 76th Maxwell Award and ULM junior quarterback was added to the list. The original list was comprised of 65 players, who were selected based on their performances during the
2011 season. As the 2012 season has progressed, the Club believes that several additional players warrant attention because of their noteworthy play.
ULM-Baylor Sets New Sun Belt TV Rating Record
The Louisiana-Monroe vs. Baylor football game that was televised live on ESPN Friday, September 21 was watched by a record number of viewers for the Sun Belt Conference. Friday’s night game was watched by over 2.2 million people with a rating of 1.8 - the highest
rated in history for a game involving a Sun Belt Conference team. The previous highest rated game in Sun Belt history was the FIU at Louisville game a season ago that earned a 1.4 rating. The game was the third highest rated college football game that aired
on ESPN or ESPN2 last week – trailing only the LSU at Auburn game and the Arizona at Oregon game. The ULM-Baylor game received a higher rating than the BYU at Boise State, Virginia at TCU, UTEP at Wisconsin and Vanderbilt at Georgia games.
ASU Announces $22?Million Football Facility Project
Arkansas State University announced a $22 million football facility project, including a two-level football operations building and 76,000 square-foot indoor practice facility in Liberty Bank Stadium’s north end zone. The new football operations building’s
first floor will house A-State’s locker room, state-of-the-art strength and conditioning and sports medicine centers, a players lounge and equipment room. The second floor will feature coaching and administrative offices, team meeting rooms, a history and
heritage showroom and a team film room with theatre seating. The indoor practice facility will run east and west and be connected to the north side of the operations building.
2012 Sun Belt Network Football Schedule Announced
Now in its fourth season, the is a joint partnership with Comcast/Charter Sports Southeast (CSS) and Cox Sports Television (CST). Each game will be available in 13 states across the southeast and is often available on ESPN3.com and ESPN GamePlan outside of
the CSS and CST markets. The agreement with CSS and CST has resulted in the broadcasting of football, men’s basketball, women’s basketball, baseball, volleyball, and softball contests throughout the last three seasons. In whole, the Sun Belt Network has been
responsible for over 100 events airing on CSS and CST over the past three seasons. The seven games selected for the Sun Belt Network adds to the growing list of football broadcasts that the Sun Belt Conference and its institutions are directly responsible
Team News and Notes
Arkansas State Red Wolves
Following its first open week of the year, the Arkansas State football team will carry a five-game road winning streak against conference opponents into its Tuesday-night matchup against Louisiana-Lafayette at Cajun Field . . . Winners in three of its last
four games, A-State moved its overall record to 4-3 and Sun Belt Conference mark to 2-1 with a 36-29 home victory over South Alabama its last time out. The Red Wolves have now won back-to-back games for the first time since ending the 2011 regular season on
a nine-game winning streak . . . ULL?has won the last seven meetings between the two teams in Lafayette, with ASU’s last road win against the Ragin’ Cajuns coming 20-7 in 1992. Tuesday’s game will be the 41st meeting all-time between ASU?and the Cajuns. A-State’s
40 games played against the Ragin’ Cajuns are the second most against any opponent in school history behind only its 57 played against Memphis . . . Senior quarterback Ryan Aplin was named as one of 10 finalists for the 2012 Senior CLASS?Award on Oct. 18 .
. . Aplin was one of 30 original candidates from across the nation for the award, which annually recognizes an NCAA?FBS?senior with notable achievements in areas of community, classroom, character and competition.
Florida Atlantic Owls
Florida Atlantic went on the road for the fifth time in 2012 and the second time in as many weeks. The Owls stop in Mobile, Alabama was the second game in the state of Alabama this season but, the first time FAU had faced the University of South Alabama in
football. With the game in the books, FAU has played every FBS school in the state of Alabama, making it the most traveled to state in the Union. The trip began with the Owls posting 14 first quarter points, meeting the team’s game scoring average in the first
frame. FAU would add three in the second and post 31 points in regulation, the most FAU had scored in a game since scoring 38 in FAU’s 2011 victory over another Alabama school, UAB. FAU’s scoring was made possible with several career efforts. Junior Jonathan
Wallace had a career long 46-yard run and a game high 101 yards, the first 100+ yard performance of his career. Senior Graham Wilbert completed a career high 27 passes of 41 attempts, while accumulating a career high 303 yards. His go-to-receiver was sophomore
William Dukes who had a career high 119 yards including the longest reception of his young career, 50 yards. Dukes also recorded his first touchdown of the 2012 season. Defensively, senior Brent Harstad recorded a career high 15 tackles, including a tackle
for a loss of three yards and a forced fumble. Fellow senior David Hinds added 11 tackles and a fourth quarter sack for a loss of four yards. Linebacker Adarius Glanton rounded out the double-digit tacklers with 10, including one for a loss of three yards.
Freshman Trevon Coley recorded the first sack of his career while Cory Henry had a sack for a loss of 10.
FAU will face the third team from the state of Alabama in 2012 this weekend when the Owls play host to Troy. The game will serve as the 2012 FAU Homecoming with a schedule 5 p.m. kick. Troy holds the all-time series at 8-1 with the lone FAU victory being
a 38-32 win that crowned FAU as the 2007 Sun Belt Champions and sent the Owls to the New Orleans Bowl.
Darian Mallary (Sr., RB) scored his ninth rushing touchdown of the season, a one-yard run at 3:08 in the first quarter. Mallary now has had at least one touchdown rushing in each game he has played this season (did not play at Louisiana-Lafayette due to injury).
The nine rush TDs through eight games is the second-most by an FIU running back (Rashod Smith, 11, 2004). The touchdown was the 14th of his career, moving him into a tie for fifth all-time with Greg Ellingson (2007-10). Mallary now has 84 career points, tied
for eighth with Ellingson. The score was also his 13th career rushing touchdown, which is No. 3 all-time.
Wayne Times (Sr., WR) had 4 catches for 28 yards in the game, extending his streak to 25-straight games played with at least one reception dating back to the 2010 season. His streak is the third-longest streak in FIU history, passing Chandler Williams (24
games, 2004-06). Times’ three-yard touchdown catch at 11:39 in the third quarter was the fifth of his career, tying him with Jonathan Faucher (2008-11) for No. 8 all-time in to touchdown receptions. The play was set-up earlier by a career-long 56-yard catch
by Nick England (Fr., WR) from Medlock.
Justin Halley (R-So., FS) returned a fumbled lateral 62 yards for a touchdown at 7:57 in the third quarter. It was the first defensive score of the season and first since Jonathan Cyprien’s nine-yard INT return vs. ULM last season on Nov. 19. It was the
third-longest fumble return for a touchdown in program history and longest since Isame Faciane’s 51-yard return vs. UCF last season on Sept. 17.
Jack Griffin (Sr., K) broke the all-time scoring record at FIU notching 7 points in the game to reach 239 career points. He tied Adam Moss’s (2002-05) mark of 233 career points with his extra point on FIU’s first touchdown at 1:26 in the first quarter. He
broke the mark with his extra point at 3:08 in the first quarter. Griffin broke the scoring record in less than three full seasons vs. four full seasons for Moss.
Louisiana-Lafayette Ragin' Cajuns
The Ragin’ Cajuns football team attempts to bounce back from their first Sun Belt Conference loss of the season when the Cajuns host defending SBC champion Arkansas State on Tuesday, Oct. 23 beginning at 7:00 p.m. in Cajun Field.
The Cajuns (4-2, 2-1 SBC) are coming off a disappointing 30-23 loss at North Texas on Tuesday (Oct. 16), a game in which the Cajuns could not hold a 20-6 early third quarter lead.
The Cajuns will put their eight-game Cajun Field win streak on the line, the third-longest in facility history.
Sophomore Terrance Broadway accounted for a season-high 349 yards of total offense against UNT, completing 26-of-41 passes for 265 yards and gaining 84 yards rushing, including a 75-yard touchdown run.
Brett Baer continued his stellar senior campaign, connecting on a 47-yard field goal to tie the game late in the game, and scored six points to raise his career scoring total to 206 points.
After not playing a game on a Tuesday in 49 years, the Cajuns play its second straight Tuesday night contest when they host the Red Wolves. The Arkansas State game will be the 1,048th game in Ragin’ Cajuns football history, but it will be just the sixth
time that the Cajuns have played on Tuesday, owning a 2-3 mark, and the first at home. The Cajuns won 26-0 over Louisiana Tech on Nov. 14, 1916 and 13-0 over Southeastern Louisiana on Nov. 11, 1930. The first Tuesday game came on Nov. 5, 1912 when the Cajuns
fell to LSU, 85-3. Until last week, the most recent Tuesday contest was a 14-0 loss to Southeastern Louisiana on Sept. 10, 1963.
With the second half of the season underway, the national publications each released their mid-season All-America teams and senior kicker Brett Baer fared well. Baer was named a first team selection by ESPN.com, a second team choice by SI.com and a third
team honoree by Phil Steele. Baer is the only Sun Belt athlete on any of the mid-season teams. Baer is second in the nation having made 13-of-16 field goals and ranks 16th with 63 points in six games. Having made 38 of his 43 career attempts (.884), Baer is
two field goal attempts away from qualifying for the NCAA record for career field goal accuracy, which is held by Florida State’s Bobby Raymond (.878, 43-49 in 1983-84).
ULM is 5-2 for the first time since moving up to the FBS-level in 1994. The Warhawks started their final season at the FCS (1-AA) level 5-2. The four-game win streak is also the first of the FBS-era. ULM won five straight during the 1993 campaign (Oct. 16 -
The Warhawks sit atop the Sun Belt Conference standings at 3-0. Since joining the league in 2001, it marks the third time ULM has started the season 3-0 in conference play (2005; 2009).
ULM allowed 28 first half points at WKU. It was the most points allowed in a half since FIU scored 28 points in the first half in a 28-17 win (at FIU, November 19, 2011).
With the overtime win at WKU, ULM is now 2-1 in overtime games this season and the Warhawks now own a 7-3 mark in overtime games.
Kolton Browning’s 20-yard TD rush in the 2nd quarter was the fourth of season for the junior and 13th of his career. Browning threw two interceptions at WKU. It was the first time Browning threw two interceptions in a game since November 19, 2011 (at FIU).
Browning threw one or fewer interceptions in seven consecutive games before last Saturday’s contest. Browning finished with 377 yards of total offense and he now ranks second in school history with 8,138 yards of total offense. Steven Jyles (2002-05) owns
the school record with 10,234 yards of total offense.
Cortney Davis’ 30-yard TD reception as time expired in the first half was his first career reception, meanwhile Rashon Ceaser caught his first career TD in the fourth quarter. Je’Ron Hamm recorded his third TD reception of the year with a 16-yard TD reception
in the 2nd quarter.
Isaiah Newsome’s interception in the first quarter at WKU was the second of the season for the junior and the sixth of his career.
Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders
With 159 passing yards tonight against Mississippi State, Logan Kilgore surpassed Marvin Collier (1985-88) for seventh place on the all-time list. Collier had 4,234 yards and Kilgore now has 4,352 yards. The junior now has his sight set on sixth place Teddy
QB Logan Kilgore started his 20th career game which ranks as the most on the team.
DE Omar McLendon played in his team-best 43rd game.
LB Justin Jones made his first start of the season and the ninth of his career.
PK Carlos Lopez connected on his 9th field goal of the season in the second quarter and is now 9-for-10 on season.
Shubert Bastien forced the fourth fumble of his career in the second quarter ... Kendall Dangerfield recovered his first fumble of the season and second of his career in second quarter.
TE Jacob Corbaley had a career-high 3 catches.
Middle Tennessee was held without a touchdown for the first time since playing Tennessee on Nov. 5, 2011.
North Texas Mean Green
North Texas knocked off Louisiana-Lafayette, who entered the game with a 4-1 record. It was the first win for the Mean Green over a team with a 4-1 record or better after five games since 2001. The last North Texas win over a team with a 4-1 record or better
was when the Mean Green knocked off a 5-0 Middle Tennessee team in 2001. That win was the start of a 26-game conference winning streak.
Derek Thompson passed for a season-high 282 yards against Louisiana-Lafayette, marking the fifth straight game win which Thompson has topped 200-yards in passing, which is a career-best. Thompson is just the fourth player in school history to pass for 200-yards
in five straight games. Thompson has nine career 200-yard passing games, which is tied for fourth in school history with Scott Davis.
Freshman running back Antoinne Jimmerson was the first running back to have a 100-yard receiving game since Lance Dunbar last season against Indiana. Along with the 100-yard receiving game, Jimmerson had two receiving touchdowns. It is the first time since
2002 that a North Texas running back had two receiving touchdowns in a game. Michael Hickmon was the last Mean Green running back to have two receiving touchdowns, nearly a decade ago against New Mexico State.
North Texas notched its first come from behind win when trailing at the half under head coach Dan McCarney in the win over Louisiana-Lafayette. Additionally the Mean Green moved to a perfect 6-0 under McCarney when scoring 30 points or more.
The Mean Green racked up a season-high 524 yards in the win over the Cajuns, which are the most yards in the McCarney era and the most in a game since 2009.
The Mean Green 3-4 through seven games, which is the best mark after seven games since 2004. The 2-1 league record is the best conference record through three games since 2005.
South Alabama Jaguars
USA picked up its first-ever Sun Belt Conference win, and first over an NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision opponent, with a 37-34 come-from behind victory over Florida Atlantic at home Saturday. … The Jaguars had to score twice in the final six minutes to force
the extra period, giving the program its second win all-time when trailing at the end of three-quarters; USA rallied to beat UC Davis, 24-21, on Oct. 23, 2010. … The Jags also improved to 2-1 all-time in the overtime with the victory, with all three of those
contests going into double overtime. Saturday’s contest with the Owls was the first of those to take place at home, though. … Playing just his second game at wide receiver, Gabe Loper led the Jaguars with four catches for 91 yards and a touchdown in their
win over Florida Atlantic Saturday. That included two plays in the fourth quarter that helped the Jags rally for the win; with USA down 14 midway through the final period, Loper made a 27-yard catch to move the ball to the FAU-13, leading to the first of two
touchdowns in the final six minutes of regulation while his final reception of the game was a one-handed grab on a 16-yard touchdown pass with 1:09 remaining that helped send the game into overtime. … Moore blocked two field-goal attempts, one in the final
seconds of regulation and another in the second overtime, to help lead the Jaguars to a three-point double-overtime victory over FAU. In addition to the two blocks — the first time in school history that a player has been credited with more than one in a game
— the junior had three tackles solo tackles, all behind the line of scrimmage including a sack. … For the second straight game, senior PK Michel Chapuseaux kicked a career-high-tying three field goals, including converting from 37 yards out in the first overtime
and on a 35-yard attempt in the second that gave the Jaguars the three-point win. Chapuseaux has made seven of his last eight attempts dating back to USA’s first Sun Belt contest against Troy on Sept. 29. … Junior Alex Page became the first defensive lineman
in school history to finish with a double-digit tackle total after posting a career-high 10 stops to go along with two quarterback hurries in the Jaguars’ victory over Florida Atlantic. … The Jaguars had four players in double figures in tackles in the FAU
game for the first time ever, as Terrell Brigham, B.J. Scott and Enrique Williams all posted 11 stops to lead the squad in the category. It was a career-high total for Brigham, while it marked the second straight week that Williams has posted 10-plus tackles.
… After missing the Jags’ game at Arkansas State, Demetre Baker came off the bench to lead the rushing attack for the fifth time this season, picking up 73 yards on 16 carries while reaching the end zone twice. It was the first time since Kendall Houston had
two touchdowns in a Nov. 3 win over Mississippi Valley State a year ago that a USA player has accomplished the feat, while the yardage total was two shy of equaling his season high.
Troy rallied from down 16 in the second half to defeat FIU 38-37, it was the largest second half comeback from Troy since 1995 at Central Florida … Quarterback Deon Anthony’s 115 rushing yards were the most by a Troy quarterback since Bob Godsey had 122 yards
against UT-Martin on Oct. 28, 1997 … Quarterback Deon Anthony’s two rushing touchdowns were the most by a quarterback since Dantavious Parker had two against Middle Tennessee on Oct. 6, 2009 … Kicker Will Scott’s go-ahead 42-yard field goal was the first go-ahead
field goal in the last 15 seconds of play since Michael Taylor’s 34-yard field goal that gave Troy a 30-27 win over Bowling Green on Sept. 4, 2010 … FIU’s touchdown on the opening drive was the first score allowed by the Trojans on an opening drive this season.
In four of the previous six games, the Trojans held their opponent to three-and-outs . … Quarterback Dallas Tidwell took his first career snap in the first quarter, handing the ball off to Shawn Southward … Running back Shawn Southward rushed for 51 yards
on the day, moving him into seventh place on the Troy career rushing yards list with 2405 career yards … Running back Shawn Southward carried the ball 12 times on the day, moving him into seventh place on the Troy career carries list with 474 career carries
… Quarterback Deon Anthony’s first-quarter 33-yard rushing touchdown was the longest touchdown run of the season for the Trojans. It was also a career-long rush for Anthony … Wide receiver Chip Reeves second-quarter touchdowncatch gave him 12 for his career,
tying him for 13th on the Troy career receiving touchdowns list. … Linebacker Dimitri Miles’ second-quarter sack was the first of his career … Running back Shawn Southward’s second-quarter carry pushed Troy over last year’s rushing total of 1,064 yards. The
Trojans finished today’s game with 1174 rushing yards with five games to play … linebacker Brannon Byran’s third quarter interception of FIU quarterback Jake Medlock snapped a school record of 203consecutive passes without an interception … Wide receiver Eric
Thomas’ two third-quarter touchdown receptions gave him 14 on his career, tying him for eighth on theTroy career receiving touchdowns list … The two touchdown receptions by wide receiver Eric Thomas was the fourth multi-touchdown game of the junior’s career.
The Hilltoppers saw their four-game winning streak come to an end with a 43-42 overtime loss against Louisiana-Monroe on Saturday. It marked the second straight year that WKU and ULM have played an overtime game. The Toppers won in extra periods last year in
WKU played in front of its second straight home sellout as an announced homecoming crowd of 22,323 watched Saturday’s game. That also marks the second-largest crowd in Houchens Industries-L.T. Smith Stadium history. A stadium-record crowd of 23,252 was in
attendance for WKU’s last home game – a victory over Southern Miss on Sept. 22.
The overtime loss was the first in five extra-session games for WKU under head coach Willie Taggart. The Hilltoppers fell to 9-2 all-time in overtime contests.
The loss is just the third for WKU in its last 15 games dating back to last season, but it did snap the Hilltoppers’ nine-game Sun Belt Conference win streak. That was tied for the second-longest active streak in the nation entering the week.
Kawaun Jakes threw completed a career-high 25 passes for a career-best 308 yards against the Warhawks. He became the first Hilltopper to throw for 300 yards in a game since J.J. Jewell finished with 357 passing yards at Central Florida on Sept. 24, 1994.
Jakes also threw for four first-half touchdowns, equaling a career high set in the season opener against Austin Peay. He now has 15 touchdown passes on the season – four shy of breaking the WKU single-season record with still five games remaining in the regular
season. Jakes also becomes the first QB in Hilltopper history to have two career games with four or more TD passes.
Jack Doyle caught two first-half touchdowns for the first multi-TD game of his career. He now has three touchdowns catches in his last two games after going the entire 2011 season without a scoring catch. Doyle finished the game with six catches for 82 yard.
Willie McNeal hauled in a seven catches for a career-high 120 yards, making him the first 100-yard receiver for the Hilltoppers in 2012.
Georgia State Panthers (Coming in 2013)
Georgia State (1-6) will face its third ranked team in four weeks as the Panthers travel to James Madison Saturday for a 3:30 p.m. game at Bridgeforth Stadium in Harrisonburg, Va.
Playing without top rusher Donald Russell, who left the game after just four carries due to a sprained knee, the Panthers fell to No. 24 Villanova, 49-24, at the Georgia Dome.
James Madison (5-2, 3-1 CAA) had climbed to No. 2 in the nation in both FCS polls last week before falling to Richmond, 35-29. The Dukes are now one of four CAA teams atop the standings with one loss in conference play.
Wide receiver and return specialist Albert Wilson set a Georgia State record with 290 all-purpose yards against Villanova. He caught six passes for 104 yards, including a 55-yard touchdown catch, for the sixth 100-yard game of his career. He added five kickoff
returns for 176 yards, highlighted by a season-long 61-yard return, and one punt return for 10 yards. The junior from Port St. Lucie, Fla., leads the CAA in all-purpose yards, averaging 154.5 yards per game, a figure that would rank among the top 15 in FCS.
Wilson is the Panthers’ leading receiver with 36 catches for 666 yards and six touchdowns. He also averages 11.0 yards on punt returns and 24.6 yards on kickoff returns. For his career, Wilson has a GSU-record 3,378 all-purpose yards (125.1 per game) and 15
Georgia State punter Matt Hubbard owns the sixth-best punting average in FCS, averaging 44.74 yards per kick. Seventeen of his 39 punts have travelled 50 yards or more, including his amazing 80-yard boot against South Carolina State. The Panthers’ net punting
average of 38.68 is the eighth-best mark in FCS. Because of GSU’s reclassification to the Football Bowl Subdivision, Hubbard and the Panthers do not qualify for NCAA rankings in FBS or FCS. The top individual average in FCS belongs to Tony Epperson of Weber
State at 48.00, while the top net punting average is Weber State’s mark of 40.17.
Texas State Bobcats (Coming in 2013)
It was a joyous homecoming for the Texas State football team, as it won its first ever Western Athletic Conference game, 38-7, over Idaho Saturday night at Bobcat Stadium. With the win, the Bobcats improved to 3-3 overall and 1-0 in conference play.
Texas State rushed for 337 yards, and had 182 yards passing for a total of 519 yards total offense. Texas State finished the game with a total yards advantage of 519-315.
First time since September 11, 2010 vs. Southern Arkansas that Texas State has held its opponent
scoreless in the second half.
First time since September 26, 2009 vs. Texas Southern that Texas State has beaten an opponent by 30 or more points.
The Bobcats will have a week off before returning to action, Saturday, Oct. 27, at San Jose State. It is the team’s first road conference game of the year.