Warhawks Inside Slant

It couldn't be any plainer for ULM this week
against UL-Lafayette.
Beat the struggling
Cajuns to even the Warhawks' record at 6-6 and
give them postseason eligibility. With several
conferences coming up short in bowl-eligible
teams, that might mean a bid would be
While acknowledging the reward that could
come to his team, coach Todd Berry sees other
motivational factors for his young Warhawks.
"This should be a big game just because it's
really the next game," Berry said. "If you
really love playing the game, it really doesn't
make any difference what all the peripheral
things are. The most important thing is
just love playing the next one. I'd like out
football team to get to that point to where we
play well regardless of who we're playing or
what the other peripheral motivations are."
The fact the game also is an instate rivalry
and that it's Senior Day for the Warhawks also
are incentives.
The Cajuns (2-9) are looking to end a
seven-game losing streak and perhaps save the
job of coach Rickey Bustle.
And the Warhawks are trying to finish above
.500 in the conference for a second consecutive
season. They are 4-3 and will match last year's
5-3 mark with a victory.
But still, bowl talk overshadows pretty much
everything else. The Warhawks, who began playing
at the FBS level in 1994, have never played in a
Coach Todd Berry is in his first
season, but he has made enough of an impression
that he has earned a contract extension.
Athletic director Bobby Staub made the
announcement two days before the Warhawks beat
North Texas that Berry's contract would run
through the 2014 season, an extension of one
ULM has won five of the last eight
games against UL-Lafayette, but two of the three
losses have come in the last two years.
The Warhawks could be close to
getting their names on the back of their jerseys
again. They were taken off in 2009, and the
policy was continued in 2010 with Berry saying
the names would be returned when the Warhawks
receive a bowl bid. A win over the Cajuns and
that could happen.
Series History: ULM leads
UL-Lafayette, 23-22 (last meeting, 2009, 21-17,
Scouting The Offense: With tough
outings at Auburn and LSU, the Warhawks have
seen their production dip to 347.1 yards per
game for the season, but they ripped North Texas
for 480 yards in their last game. Against Sun
Belt opponents, they are averaging 401 yards per
game, and have been over the 400-yard mark four
times. QB Kolton Browning is third in the league
with 217.1 yards passing per game, and is fourth
in passing efficiency.
Scouting The Defense: The Warhawks
have had their ups and downs defensively,
yielding more than 450 yards in total offense to
Sun Belt opponents Arkansas State, Middle
Tennessee, and Florida International (all
losses), but holding Florida Atlantic and Troy
under 300, and North Texas to 325. They held LSU
to 251 yards in a 51-0 loss. Teams are rushing
for 169.2 yards per game against ULM, which
ranks fourth in the Sun Belt.
Quote To Note:
"We've certainly addressed
the bowl possibilities with our
players. That would be very
naive of us to not talk about
-Coach Todd Berry, on
what is on the line for his team
in the regular-season finale.
This Week's Game: UL-Lafayette at ULM,
Nov. 27-The Cajuns arrive having lost last seven
in a row to fall to 2-9. They are 2-5 in Sun
Belt play and face the possibility of finishing
last if they lose and Western Kentucky manages
to beat Troy. A victory gets them at least a
share of seventh place with North Texas, which
has finished its conference slate at 3-5.
Keys To The Game: Hang tough for 60
minutes. The Cajuns have started fast in most of
their games, but have had problems finishing.
The Warhawks need to rattle Cajun QB Blaine
Gautier, who has thrown six interceptions in 89
Players To Watch:
Ken Dorsey-Dorsey leads the Warhawks with
five sacks and is third in the Sun Belt in
tackles for losses with 13 among his 49 tackles.
Luther Ambrose-Ambrose is QB Kolton
Browning's favorite target with 61 catches for
723 yards and six touchdowns.
Tavarese Maye-Maye is the second-leading
receiver for the Warhawks with 40 receptions for
467 yards, and also has nine carries for 85
yards and a touchdown.
Roster Report:
Kolton Browning has a sore ankle
but is expected to be close to 100 percent
against the Cajuns.
Senior RB
Frank Goodin is third on
ULM's all-time rushing list with 2,849 yards,
172 yards shy of No. 2 Roosevelt Potts, who had
3,061. Goodin's 75 yards against North Texas was
his best output this season.