Latest Team Rankings
Free Text Alerts
|ShopMobileRadio RSSRivals.com Yahoo! Sports|
|College Teams||High Schools|
September 15, 2007Coach Bob Toledo and his Tulane Green Wave will look to pick up their first win of the season tonight when they take on the Houston Cougars. Tulane opened the season last week in the Louisiana Superdome with a 38-17 loss to the Mississippi State Bulldogs.
Tulane hung tough with the Bulldogs in the first half piling up 194 yards of total offense and earning a 17-17 tile at the break. But then the wheels came off in the second half. The Green Wave had the ball for just 16 plays and failed to get a first down.
"We did not have the ball in the second half and that hurt us. We must protect the ball better. We made too many mistakes and had too many turnovers that led to three scores," said Toledo.
The Cougars are coming off a 48-27 loss to Oregon in week one of the season. The Cougars used two quarterbacks as coach Art Briles continues to try and fill the void led by Kevin Kolb.
Briles pulled started sophomore QB Blake Joseph but pulled the youngster after he was a struggling 8-of-12 for 51-yards and an interception. Briles then got a solid performance out of Case Keenum.
Keenum had an impressive outing as he completed 14-of-27 passes for 179-yards and a touchdown in the Cougars 48-27 loss to Oregon. Cougars RB Anthony Aldridge totaled 325 all-purpose yards rushing for 205 and hauling another 85.
Toledo stressed the importance of his team getting off to a good start in Conference USA play.
"It's important. It's a league game. All the games count, but this one really counts. If you want to win a championship and go to a bowl game, this is one that is important to try and win. If you want to be a champion, you have to dethrone the champion. So, we have a little bit of work ahead of us."
Today's meeting between the Cougars and Wave will be the 13th between the two schools with the Cougars holding an 8-4 edge over Tulane. Tulane has a lot of talent from the Houston area.
Tulane has ten players that are natives from Houston and 18 players overall from the H-Town area.
"We know that a lot of folks from back home will be the stands tonight and we want to play well," said Baytown Native and Green Wave receiver Jeremy Williams.
Last week the Wave were in position to win the game in the second half but then the Bulldogs physical play and Wave turnovers were too much for Toledo's group to overcome in his team's season opener.
Toledo says his club can't make the same mistakes and expect to win. Toledo says there are several things his team can do to help its chances in pulling of the upset of the high-powered Cougars.
"There are a few things. Offensively, we can't turn the ball over. We have to be physical, sustain drives, convert third-down plays and score points. Defensively we can't give up the big play. We have to rally to the football and make tackles. Special teams-wise, we can't have any bone-head type mistakes and we have to play hard."
Tulane is in the midst of a four game season opening home stand but the Cougars are as good as Mississippi State and will come at the Wave Defense with a more balanced attack than State did last week.
I think that the Wave will play hard and may have a better chance to win and if QB Anthony Scelfo sees action that could be a key tempo changer that could weigh into Tulane's favor as Scelfo is more of a running style quarterback.
I think that the Cougars will be a little too much in the end.