Game 2 Preview: Northwestern State

LAFAYETTE - After a near upset at SEC member Kentucky in the 2015 season-opener, the Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns football team open its home slate on Saturday (Sept. 12) when it faces in-state opponent Northwestern State in the 15th annual Herbert Heymann Classic at Cajun Field.

Kickoff is scheduled for 6 p.m. and will be aired on ESPN3 with Kevin Brown (pxp) and Brian Kinchen (color) handling the call. The game will also be broadcast on the Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns Radio Network with Jay Walker (pxp), Richie Falgout (color) and Travis Webb (sideline) providing commentary.

Louisiana (0-1) erased a 23-point deficit in the second half against Kentucky as Torrey Pierce rushed for a pair of second-half touchdowns while Jalen Nixon's 23-yard TD run and two-point conversion by Elijah McGuire with 7:36 remaining knotted the game at 33-33.

The Ragin' Cajuns outgained UK in total offense, 479-435, and held a 247-178 advantage on the ground. Pierce, who missed the team's final seven games of the 2014 season with an ankle injury, rushed for a career-high 110 yards while McGuire gained 86 yards on a career-high 27 carries.

Brooks Haack, in his second career start at quarterback, went 22-for-37 through the air for 194 yards and added a 4-yard TD run to halt a 21-0 run by Kentucky. Nixon rushed for 37 yards and a TD while completing all four passes he tossed for 38 yards.

Freshman Gary Haynes caught a game-high eight passes in his collegiate debut for Louisiana while Gabe Fuselier caught a career-best seven passes.

The game also saw the return of fifth-year senior Jamal Robinson, who missed a total of nine games last season due to knee and foot injuries. The Slidell, La., native caught six passes for 61 yards.

Defensively, Dominique Tovell registered seven tackles, including a school-record tying five stops for loss. Tovell added a pair of sacks for the Ragin' Cajuns and helped lead a defensive unit that held Kentucky to 103 yards of total offense in the second half.

The game against Northwestern State (0-1) marks the 74th meeting between the two schools, with the series ranking as the second-oldest in Ragin' Cajuns history behind their rivalry with Louisiana Tech (86 games).

The Demons opened their season on Sept. 3 with a 34-20 loss at home to No. 19 Southeastern Louisiana in the Southland Conference opener for both teams.

Game No. 2

LOUISIANA RAGIN' CAJUNS (0-1, 0-0 Sun Belt)

Head Coach: Mark Hudspeth (Delta State, 1992)

Record at Louisiana: 36-17 (5th season), Career Record: 102-38 (12th year)

NORTHWESTERN STATE DEMONS (0-1, 0-1 Southland)

Head Coach: Jay Thomas (Southern Miss, 1988)

Record at NSU: 12-13 (3rd season), Career Record: 39-48 (9th year)

GAME INFORMATION

September 12, 2015 • 6:05 p.m. CDT • Lafayette, La. • Cajun Field (41,426) Series History: The 74th meeting between the schools ... the Northwestern State series is the second-oldest in Ragin' Cajuns history ... Louisiana leads series, 36-35-2 ... UL leads in games played in Lafayette, 21-17-1 ... the Cajuns have won four of last six meetings dating back to 1978.

TV/RADIO/SOCIAL MEDIA INFORMATION

ESPNU: Kevin Brown, PxP • Brian Kinchen, Analyst

Ragin' Cajuns Radio Network: Jay Walker, PxP • Richie Falgout, Analyst • Travis Webb, Sideline In Lafayette: KPEL 1420-AM (Flagship); KHXT 107.9-FM; Affiliates: KTUX 98.9-FM (Shreveport); WGSO 990-AM (New Orleans); KJEF 1290-AM (Jennings); KLCL 1470-AM (Lake Charles); KRJO 1680-AM (Monroe); KTIB 640-AM (Thibodaux)

Live Stats: RaginCajuns.com

Twitter Updates: @ULRaginCajuns; Facebook: RaginCajunsAthletics;

YouTube: IAm4RaginCajuns; Instagram: ULRaginCajuns


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