No. 23 SLU welcomes UIW for Homecoming, key Southland matchup
No. 23/25 Southeastern Louisiana (3-2, 2-1 SLC) vs. UIW (3-2, 2-1 SLC)
Saturday, Oct. 12, 2019 | 4 p.m. | Hammond, La. | Strawberry Stadium (7,408)
Series History: SLU leads 4-2
Last Meeting: UIW 52, Southeastern Louisiana 34 (Oct. 6, 2018 – San Antonio, Texas)
ESPN+ — Announcers: John Sartori and Richie Solares
Southeastern Sports Radio Network (KSLU 90.9, Kajun 107.1, The Highway 104.7, The Boss 103.7 FM/1400 AM WFPR) — Announcers: Mark Willoughby, Robbie Rhodes and Allen Waddell
HAMMOND, La. – The No. 23/25 Southeastern Louisiana football team returns home to face another 2018 FCS playoff participant on Homecoming Saturday at 4 p.m. in Strawberry Stadium.
The game between the Lions (3-2, 2-1 Southland) and the visiting Cardinals (3-2, 2-1 Southland) – the defending Southland Conference co-champions and the third FCS playoff participant to visit Hammond this season – will be televised on ESPN+ and will also air on the Southeastern Sports Radio Network (KSLU-FM (90.9), Kajun 107.1 FM, The Highway 104.7 FM and The Boss 103.7 FM/1400 AM WFPR), online at www.LionSports.net/listenlive and via the Radio FX and TuneIn Radio apps.
The 2019 Homecoming King and Queen will be announced at halftime of Saturday’s contest. The first 300 SLU students through the gates will receive a free Homecoming t-shirt. The annual Homecoming parade runs through campus at noon.
Southeastern will be looking to bounce back from a 38-34 loss at McNeese last Saturday. The Lions overcame a 21-point second-quarter deficit to take a lead deep into the fourth quarter, but the Cowboys came up with the go-ahead score with just over two minutes left.
The Lions head into Saturday’s Homecoming contest averaging 37.4 points and 452.0 yards per contest. SLU ranks ninth nationally in passing offense, as Chason Virgil (1,445 yards, 10 TD, 4 INT) and Cole Kelley (198 yards, 6 TD, 0 INT) have both been effective under center.
14 different players have caught passes this season for the Lions. The trio of CJ Turner (25 catches, 308 yards, 3 TD), Austin Mitchell (22-408-4 TD) and Bransen Schwebel (22-236-3 TD) have been the top targets for Southeastern. Devonte Williams leads SLU with 183 rushing yards and three rushing touchdowns.
The Southeastern defense is allowing 445.4 yards and 30.6 points per contest through five games. Alexis Ramos leads the Lions with a team-high 40 tackles.
SLU is currently third in FCS in both tackles for loss (47) and sacks (18). Josh Carr Jr. (10.0 TFL, 4.5 sacks) leads the Lions in both categories, followed by Isaac Adeyemi-Berglund (8.0 TFL, 4.0 sacks).
Adeyemi-Berglund also leads the Lions with three forced fumbles, while Xavier Lewis, Ferlando Jordan and Shawntrez Spates each have one interception. Dejion Lynch leads SLU with five pass breakups.
Southeastern’s young kicking game has been solid. Bryce Broussard is 5-for-5 on field goals, while Austin Dunlap is second in the Southland with a 42.9 punting average.
After dropping a 45-6 decision to Sam Houston State in the Southland opener, UIW has bounced back with consecutive wins over Abilene Christian (31-24) and Houston Baptist (38-36).
Quarterback Jon Copeland (1,294 yards, 9 TD, 4 INT) leads a UIW offense that is averaging 29.0 points and 435.6 yards per game. Kam Williams (32 catches, 495 yards, 4 TD) is Copeland’s top target, while the trio of Kevin Brown (301 rushing yards, 1 TD), Ameer King (291-1 TD) and Keyondrick Philio (174-6 TD) lead the rushing attack.
Opponents are scoring 36.8 points and averaging 483.6 yards per game versus the Cardinals. Mar’kel Cooks leads the team with 30 tackles, while Jaylon Jimmerson has a league-high three interceptions.
Southeastern is 4-2 versus UIW since the Cardinals joined the Southland Conference. The Lions are 2-1 at home and on the road versus UIW. Last season, the Cardinals won a 52-34 shootout in San Antonio.
Since 1946, Southeastern has a 30-24-1 record on Homecoming. Since the program returned in 2003, the Lions are 9-7 in Homecoming games. Last season, SLU defeated Houston Baptist, 62-52, on Homecoming.
Southeastern will enjoy its bye week before traveling to Houston Baptist for a 2 p.m. contest on Oct. 26. Television plans will be announced on Monday, October 14. The game can be heard on the Southeastern Sports Radio Network (KSLU-FM (90.9), Kajun 107.1 FM, The Highway 104.7 FM and The Boss 103.7 FM/1400 AM WFPR), online at www.LionSports.net/listenlive and via the Radio FX and TuneIn Radio apps.
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