Five Keys to Beating South Alabama – From the Bird’s Nest
Make no mistake about it, this is a big one.
The Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns face an uphill battle to get to six wins and a bowl bid. They face a South Alabama team they've never beaten in Mobile. This one is a must win as far as bowl eligibility is concerned.
If they're going to get back to .500, here's what they need to do.
THE "X" FACTOR--Xavier Johnson is a running back that doesn't get enough ink in this league. He's capable of putting up solid numbers. South Alabama was throwing it a lot earlier, but they're starting to make running it a priority. If Johnson has a big game, it won't bode well for Louisiana.
HERE'S TO YOUR HEALTH--Coach Mark Hudspeth said the long layoff benefitted Trey Ragas more than any other player. Ragas was pretty much non existent in the game at Arkansas State. A healthy Cajuns running back and running game are paramount this week.
WHO RETURNS PUNTS?--The two Cajun punt returners were both in the concussion protocol last game. Even if both are good to go, do the Cajuns need them more at PR or at their respective positions? Tough call here.
IT'S WHAT'S UP FRONT THAT COUNTS--That's actually a slogan from an old cigarette commercial. But it applies here. The Cajuns' offensive line appears healthier than they've been the last few weeks and they need to get some things done on Saturday. Pass protection is going to be important. Balanced offense might be a key to winning this one.
VALUE POSSESSION...EVERY POSSESSION--A sack and strip three plays into the game and a momentum killing interception (among other things) doomed the Cajuns in their last game. They have to at least play even in the turnover battle this week. They can't give South Alabama any short fields or have drives killed by turnovers.