After the strides the Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns made on defense this year, this will come as no surprise.

Mike Lucas, the linebackers' coach who took over on an interim basis as defensive coordinator after week one, has had that interim tag removed by Cajuns' head football coach Mark Hudspeth.

Led by first-team All-Sun Belt Conference selection Otha Peters,  USA Today Freshman All-America Joe Dillon and linebacker Tre'maine Lightfoot, Louisiana finished the regular season ranked 24th among FBS programs in rushing defense 34th in third-down conversion defense and 40th in total defense

Lucas, who joined the Ragin' Cajuns staff in 2015 after serving as defensive coordinator at Northwestern State, spent 15 years as defensive coordinator (1987-2001) at Sam Houston State before becoming defensive coordinator (2005-06) and head coach (2007-11) at Southeastern Louisiana.

Lucas will lead the Cajuns' defense into the R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl this Saturday.