Tulane Game Notes: Green Wave hosts South Florida in home finale

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Tulane Football at Yulman Stdium
(Photo: Parker Waters)

GREEN WAVE WELCOMES USF ON SENIOR DAY
-The Green Wave will play host to USF on Saturday for its final home game of the season. Kickoff is set for 11:00 a.m. CT on ESPN+.
-Tulane’s meeting with USF will mark the Bulls’ first trip to New Orleans since 2017.
-Prior to the game, Tulane will honor 15 players as part of Senior Day.
-The Green Wave will look to snap their eight-game losing streak. Tulane also will be in search of its first ever win over USF at home.
-Tulane dropped its only meeting with USF at Yulman Stadium back in 2017, as the Green Wave fell 34-28 to the Bulls which entered the game ranked No. 16.
-The Green Wave will faceoff against USF for just the second time in program history. The series is tied at one game apiece.
-Tulane will look to bounce back from its 20-13 loss last week against Tulsa in overtime.

FIRST AND 10
1. Over the past five games, Tulane running back Tyjae Spears has returned to his explosive 2020 form, as he has rushed for a team-best 437 yards (7.1 yards per carry) and scored four touchdowns. Spears is currently averaging 73.2 yards per game in conference games which ranks fifth in the AAC.
2. Fellow running back Cameron Carroll also ranks among the Top 10 in rushing, averaging 61.3 yards per game in conference action. Carroll currently leads the team in rushing yards with 492 yards.
3. Tulane’s special teams unit has successfully executed FOUR onside kicks this season. Tulane’s four recovered onside kicks lead the nation this season.
4. The Green Wave’s matchup with Cincinnati on Oct. 30 marked the fourth nationally-ranked opponent Tulane has faced this season. Tulane has not played four nationally-ranked opponents in the same season since the 1971 campaign. The Green Wave’s meeting with Cincinnati also marked the second No. 2-ranked team Tulane has faced this season (Oklahoma was the first).
5. Prior to the Green Wave’s trip to ECU, Tulane announced its team captains for the remainder of the year. Linebacker Nick Anderson, offensive lineman Sincere Haynesworth, linebacker Kevin Henry, defensive lineman Jeffery Johnson, quarterback Michael Pratt and linebacker Dorian Williams were all voted as captains by their teammates.
6. Senior Ryan Wright has established himself as one of the top punters in the nation. His 48.1 yards per punt lead the American Athletic Conference and rank sixth nationally. Most recently, Wright was selected as a semifinalist for the Ray Guy Award.
7. Pratt has thrown at least one touchdown pass in 18 of his 19 collegiate games . He currently has 37 career touchdown passes and has cracked into the program’s all-time Top 10 in career touchdown passes (he is currently tied for eighth all-time).
8. The Green Wave have surpassed 200 yards rushing in 16 games dating back to the start of the 2019 season. Tulane led the American in rushing yards per game last year, averaging 217.1 per game.
9. Tulane has rushed for 100 yards or more as a team in 72 of its last 75 games. Tulane had its 56-game streak of rushing for at least 100 yards as a team snapped at Houston back on Oct. 8, 2020.
10. Tulane’s special teams rank fifth in the nation in net punting (44.1 yards per game).

SCOUTING USF
• The Bulls enter their matchup with Tulane after they suffered a hard-fought 45-28 setback against second-ranked Cincinnati at home.
• The Bulls have scored 70 points in their last two games alone, including 28 last week against Cincinnati. USF scored 21 points alone in the first half against the Bearcats.
• USF enters its matchup with Tulane in the midst of a 10-game road game losing streak.
• Quarterback Timmy McClain has guided the Bulls to 27.1 points per game in eight games. In his first start against nationally-ranked BYU, McClain led the Bulls to 27 points.
• USF’s 2021 roster has a strong contingent of transfer students. Twenty-nine players from the Bulls’ 2021 roster have come from outside the USF program.
• The Bulls are celebrating their 25th season of football during 2021 campaign.
• The Bulls were picked to finish 11th in the American Athletic Conference 2021 Preseason Poll.

LAST TIME OUT: TULANE FALLS IN OVERTIME
• The Green Wave’s matchup with Tulsa served as Tulane’s annual homecoming matchup.
• The attendance of 22,784 was the largest crowd at Yulman Stadium all season.
• With the loss, Tulane slipped to 5-13 all-time against Tulsa.
• Tulane has now dropped two straight games to the Golden Hurricane. Three of the last four Tulane vs. Tulsa games have been decided by seven points or less.
• Each of the past two games in the Tulane vs. Tulsa series have gone into overtime.
• Tulane trailed 13-3 with just under four minutes remaining in the game, but rallied back to tie the game at 13 to send the game into overtime.
• After scoring a touchdown late in the fourth quarter,
• The Green Wave’s seven-point overtime loss to Tulsa marked Tulane’s third loss by one score or less this season. Tulane’s seven-point loss to the Golden Hurricane also marked the 19th game the Green Wave have lost by eight points or less since the start of 2016 campaign.
• Tulane’s defensive unit registered a season-high four turnovers.
• Tulane was outgained Tulsa 382-308.
• Sincere Hayesworth, Kevin Henry, Jeffery Johnson and Michael Pratt served as the team captains.
• Tulane defensive back Josh Coltrin carried the Wave of Change flag and offensive lineman Ryan Wright carried the No. 18 flag in honor of former Tulane student-athlete Devon Walker.
• With the loss, head coach Willie Fritz dropped moved to 223-116-1 all-time.
• Offensive starters for the Green Wave were QB Michael Pratt, RB Cameron Carroll, WR Phat Watts, WR Shae Wyatt, WR Jaetavian Toles, OL Sincere Haynesworth, OL Tim Shafter, OL Corey Dublin, OL Rashad Green, OL Joey Claybrook, TE Tyrick James.
• Dublin’s start was the 59th of his career. Dublin has the most starts of any player on the team.
• Pratt threw a touchdown pass for the 18th time in his 19-game collegiate career. He now has 37 career touchdown passes which ties him for eighth all-time in program history.
• Pratt finished the game by going 13-of-30 through the air for 178 yards. He also did not throw an interception. Pratt has not thrown an interception in his last 110 passing attempts.
• Spears finished with a game-high 104 rushing yards.
• Junior Shae Wyatt caught a team-best five passes.
• Junior Phat Watts hauled in his second touchdown of the season. His 49-yard touchdown grab was his longest catch of the season.
• Defensive starters for the Green Wave were LB Nick Anderson, LB Dorian Williams, DB Jaylon Monroe, DB Ajani Kerr, DB Jadon Canady, DB Larry Brooks, DB Macon Clark, DL Darius Hodges, DL JoJo Dorceus, DL Jeffery Johnson, DL Adonis Friloux.
• Johnson’s start was the 42nd of his career which is the most of any player on the defense.
• Nick Anderson and Macon Clark led way defensively for the Green Wave, as they registered nine tackles apiece. Senior Kevin Henry also turned in a strong defensive performance, as he tallied 2.5 tackles for loss, registered a sack and had an interception.
• As a defensive unit, Tulane had four sacks and 8.0 tackles for loss.
• Punter Ryan Wright finished the game with eight punts for 398 yards (49.8 average). He also totaled a long punt of 65 yards and dropped four punts inside the 20-yard line.
• Jha’Quan Jackson finished the game with 55 kickoff return yards.
• Merek Glover connected on one extra point and two field goals. He now has 330 career points and needs just four more points to become the school’s all-time leading scorer.

PRATT FRAT
• In just 19 career appearances, quarterback Michael Pratt has quickly made a name for himself in the college football landscape.
• Pratt has thrown for over 3,000 yards and has 37 touchdown passes in his career.
• His 17 touchdowns this season rank fifth in The American and 31st nationally.
• Pratt also ranks seventh in the American in passing yards (1,932).
• The Florida native has thrown for multiple touchdown passes in 14 career games.
• Pratt has passed for over 200 yards in nine career games.
• Pratt also has proven to be a force in the running game, as he has rushed and passed for a touchdown in nine career games.
• Against UAB, Pratt threw his first interception of the year in the third quarter against the Blazers. Prior to his interception, Pratt had gone 96 attempts without throwing an interception.
• Pratt currently has thrown 110 passes without an interception.

APPROACHING A MILESTONE
• Tulane kicker Merek Glover needs just one point to pass Seth Marler to become the school’s all-time leading scorer.
• Marler has held the all-time scoring record since 2002.
• Glover currently has 333 points in his kicking career.
• Glover also ranks in the Top 10 in field goals made (45), PATS made (198), PATS attempted (203) and PAT percentage (.975).
• Glover originally joined the team as a walk-on back in 2017 and was later put on scholarship in 2019.

A SCHOLAR AND A FREAK
• Tulane linebacker Nick Anderson was recently recognized as a semifinalist for the William V. Campbell Trophy.
• Anderson was one of 79 players from the Football Bowl Subdivision that was recognized on as a William V. Campbell Trophy semifinalist.
• In the classroom, he holds a 3.7 grade point average and is majoring in Homeland Security. This past December he was selected as one of two departmental recipients of the Stephen Martin Scholars award.
• Prior to the 2021 campaign, Anderson was honored on Bruce Feldman’s annual FREAKS LIST.

THE OLD GUARD
• Tulane linebacker Kevin Henry is one of only two players (USF’s Thad Magnum) in the American Athletic Conference that is in his seventh year playing college football.
• The seventh-year linebacker currently ranks fifth on the team in tackles with 45.
• Earlier this year against Morgan State, Henry collected his first career interception return for touchdown.
• During his five years at Oklahoma State, Henry guided the Cowboys to 45 wins and five bowl appearances.

A TOUGH SLATE
• The Green Wave’s schedule included non-conference matchups against Oklahoma (Sept. 4), Morgan State (Sept. 11), Ole Miss (Sept. 17) and UAB (Sept. 25). Tulane also welcomes league opponents Houston (Oct. 7), Cincinnati (Oct. 30), Tulsa (Nov. 13) and USF (Nov. 20).
• Tulane’s 2021 schedule is currently tied for the seventh toughest schedule among teams from the FBS. The combined record of Tulane’s 2021 opponents is 75-49.
• Tulane’s matchup with Cincinnati marked the fourth nationally-ranked opponent the Green Wave have faced this season.
• The Green Wave have not faced four nationally-ranked opponents in the same season since the 1971 campaign.

35 EQUALS WINS
• Under Coach Fritz, the Green Wave have scored over 35 points in 24 games. Tulane is 21-3 in those games.
• The Olive and Blue scored exactly 38 points in last three of their last six games in 2020, all of which were wins. Tulane scored 35+ in three straight games against FBS opponents for only the second time in Fritz’s tenure. The Green Wave achieved the feat last season in wins over Houston, Army and UConn in 2019.

GETTING DEFENSIVE
• Tulane has continued its trend of putting pressure on the opposing offense.
• On Sept. 11 versus Morgan State, Tulane tallied 6.0 sacks and 10.0 tackles for loss.
• Against Ole Miss, the Green Wave registered 8.0 tackles for loss.
• Against UAB, Tulane 8.0 tackles for loss and 3.0 sacks.
• Against UCF, Tulane held the Knights to their fewest yards they have gained all year.
• The Green Wave finished the 2020 campaign first in the American Athletic Conference as a team with 36.0 sacks.
• The Green Wave defense held strong up front all of last season. The unit ranked fifth in FBS and first in the AAC in tackles for loss per game at 8.5.
• Tulane’s defensive attack pushed opposing offenses back 405 yards.
• The Olive and Blue recorded 101 tackles for loss last season, which ranked third nationally.
• The Green Wave also ranked third in the league and 31st nationally in interceptions, finishing with 12.
• Tulane ranked third in The American and 26th nationally in passes defended with 63.
• The Green Wave defense held the line of scrimmage all season in 2020. Tulane logged 10 or more tackles for loss in a single game four times last season.

THE IRON MEN
• Tulane returns four players who started in every game last year.
• OL Sincere Haynesworth, TE Tyrick James, DL Jeffery Johnson, CB Jaylon Monroe started in every game during the 2020 campaign.
• Through 10 games this season, Tulane has had 10 players that have played in every game.

FOR THE BRAND
• Senior Ryan Wright has made a habit of booming punts throughout his career with the Green Wave.
• Most recently, Wright was selected as a semifinalist for the Ray Guy Award.
• He currently leads the American Athletic Conference and ranks sixth nationally, averaging 47.8 yards per punt.
• Throughout his career has totaled over 8,000 punt yards (8,699). He is one of only five Tulane players to surpass 8,000 career punt yards in program history.
• In Wright’s first game of the 2021 campaign, he averaged 49.7 yards per punt and against Oklahoma.
• Against Morgan State, Wright’s lone punt traveled 68 yards.
• In Tulane’s trip to Ole Miss, Wright averaged 45.8 yards per punt and dropped two punts inside the 20-yard line.
• Following his performance at Ole Miss, he was named to the Ray’s 8 List – an honor that the Ray Guy Award bestows on the Top 8 punters of the week.
• Wright has posted an average of 46.2 yards per punt against UAB and ECU.
• Against SMU, Wright had three punts for 161 yards (53.7 average).
• Against at UCF, Wright averaged 48.3 yards per punt and drilled a season-best 69-yard punt.
• Last week against Tulsa, Wright averaged 49.75 yards per punt and posted a 65-yard punt.
• In 2020, Wright finished the regular season as one of 14 punters that surpassed 2,000 punting yards.
• Following the 2020 campaign, Wright earned All-AAC First Team honors.
• Prior to the 2021 campaign, Wright was selected to the preseason watch list for the Ray Guy Award.

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