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Scouting Report: Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns


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It is officially game week and the Steve Sarkisian era is set to begin Saturday afternoon inside DKR. The Longhorns will be tested right off the bat as they welcome the Louisiana Rajin' Cajuns to Austin. Billy Napier's team returns 20 of 22 starters and is looking to build off a 2020 campaign that ended in a 10-1 record, with the lone hiccup being a 3-point loss to Coastal Carolina. Let's take a look at what the Longhorns can expect when they take the field in their season opener.

Offense

QB Levi Lewis is the straw that stirs the drink for the Louisiana offense. Lewis is entering his 3rd year as the starter and is very comfortable in Billy Napier's system. He does a good job of taking care of the football and knowing his limitations. The Louisiana coaching staff won't ask Lewis to push the ball down the field often, but they do a solid job of playing to their QB's strengths and knowing weak spots in defenses. The stats show Lewis only rushed for 335 yards a season ago, but Texas will have to account for the QB in the run game. Lewis has the athleticism to make plays with his legs and has good pocket presence. He frustrated defenses often last season with his ability to avoid sacks.

The Rajin' Cajuns will be replacing their two leading rushers (Elijah Mitchell and Trey Ragas) from 2020. Sophomore Chris Smith will be asked to step up in their place after serving more as a gadget player last year. Smith is 5'9 195 pounds and can fly. He will be especially dangerous in the return game. Texas would be wise to kick the ball out of the back of the endzone any chance they get. The RB situation behind Smith is a little murky. Emani Bailey and T.J Wisham should both see playing time, but the duo has only combined for 25 carries in their careers so they are unknowns at this point.

Pretty much every notable receiver returns for Louisiana in 2021. Kyren Lacy led the team in receptions and yards last season as a true freshman and will likely emerge as the #1 receiver. Jalen Williams and Peter LeBlanc will also see targets. One interesting note on the wide receiver group as a whole is there does not appear to be many speed burners. The Rajin' Cajuns will look to create 1 v 1 matchups in the passing game and use the physicality of their experienced receivers. 

Along the offensive line, Louisiana returns all 5 starters and kept Levi Lewis upright pretty much the whole season in 2020. The offensive line unit only allowed 9 total sacks in 11 games. The lack of pressure can be attributed to quality play up front along with the heavy reliance on the quick passing game. Louisiana did have to replace their offensive line coach this offseason after previous OL coach Rob Sale left the program to join the New York Giants. 

Defense

9 of 11 starters for the Ragin' Cajuns defense will be upperclassman. The strength of the defense a season ago was defending the pass and all 5 starters in the secondary return. The safety duo of Bralen Trahan and Percy Butler is far and away the best in the Sun Belt and both would start at most power 5 schools. 

The weakness of the defense is defending the run, which surely jumped out to Steve Sarkisian as he was watching film over the last few weeks. Louisiana allowed over 180 rushing yards per game a season ago and almost 4.3 yards per rushing attempt. There is little doubt the Longhorns will look to establish the run early with Bijan Robinson to test the Louisiana defense and take pressure off Hudson Card. 

Despite the experience returning along the defensive line, Texas should have the advantage in the trenches on offense. Defensive tackle Tayland Humphrey will be a solid test for Jake Major and the interior of the Longhorns offensive line, but outside of Humphrey nothing truly jumps off the screen about the Louisiana defensive front.

Final Thoughts

This will be the toughest opener Texas has played in a long time. Many will point to Maryland in 2017 and 2018, but the fact of the matter is 2021 Louisiana would have beaten those Maryland teams by double digits. The good news for Steve Sarkisian is he inherits an experienced team that has veterans at key spots. The biggest strength of the team is along the defensive line and Louisiana has traditionally leaned heavily on the running game to set up their offense.

The biggest question heading into Saturday is can Texas consistency move the ball on the Louisiana defense? If the answer if yes, then the Longhorns should open the season with a win. If the running game bogs down and Louisiana is able to force a couple of turnovers, it is going to be a nail-biting opening game in Austin.

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  • HornSports Staff changed the title to Scouting Report: Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns
5 hours ago, Jameson McCausland said:

image.png.4e2c5c1701b7a182bb10c2058857debf.png

It is officially game week and the Steve Sarkisian era is set to begin Saturday afternoon inside DKR. The Longhorns will be tested right off the bat as they welcome the Louisiana Rajin' Cajuns to Austin. Billy Napier's team returns 20 of 22 starters and is looking to build off a 2020 campaign that ended in a 10-1 record, with the lone hiccup being a 3-point loss to Coastal Carolina. Let's take a look at what the Longhorns can expect when they take the field in their season opener.

Offense

QB Levi Lewis is the straw that stirs the drink for the Louisiana offense. Lewis is entering his 3rd year as the starter and is very comfortable in Billy Napier's system. He does a good job of taking care of the football and knowing his limitations. The Louisiana coaching staff won't ask Lewis to push the ball down the field often, but they do a solid job of playing to their QB's strengths and knowing weak spots in defenses. The stats show Lewis only rushed for 335 yards a season ago, but Texas will have to account for the QB in the run game. Lewis has the athleticism to make plays with his legs and has good pocket presence. He frustrated defenses often last season with his ability to avoid sacks.

The Rajin' Cajuns will be replacing their two leading rushers (Elijah Mitchell and Trey Ragas) from 2020. Sophomore Chris Smith will be asked to step up in their place after serving more as a gadget player last year. Smith is 5'9 195 pounds and can fly. He will be especially dangerous in the return game. Texas would be wise to kick the ball out of the back of the endzone any chance they get. The RB situation behind Smith is a little murky. Emani Bailey and T.J Wisham should both see playing time, but the duo has only combined for 25 carries in their careers so they are unknowns at this point.

Pretty much every notable receiver returns for Louisiana in 2021. Kyren Lacy led the team in receptions and yards last season as a true freshman and will likely emerge as the #1 receiver. Jalen Williams and Peter LeBlanc will also see targets. One interesting note on the wide receiver group as a whole is there does not appear to be many speed burners. The Rajin' Cajuns will look to create 1 v 1 matchups in the passing game and use the physicality of their experienced receivers. 

Along the offensive line, Louisiana returns all 5 starters and kept Levi Lewis upright pretty much the whole season in 2020. The offensive line unit only allowed 9 total sacks in 11 games. The lack of pressure can be attributed to quality play up front along with the heavy reliance on the quick passing game. Louisiana did have to replace their offensive line coach this offseason after previous OL coach Rob Sale left the program to join the New York Giants. 

Defense

10 of 12 starters for the Ragin' Cajuns defense will be upperclassman. The strength of the defense a season ago was defending the pass and all 5 starters in the secondary return. The safety duo of Bralen Trahan and Percy Butler is far and away the best in the Sun Belt and both would start at most power 5 schools. 

The weakness of the defense is defending the run, which surely jumped out to Steve Sarkisian as he was watching film over the last few weeks. Louisiana allowed over 180 rushing yards per game a season ago and almost 4.3 yards per rushing attempt. There is little doubt the Longhorns will look to establish the run early with Bijan Robinson to test the Louisiana defense and take pressure off Hudson Card. 

Despite the experience returning along the defensive line, Texas should have the advantage in the trenches on offense. Defensive tackle Tayland Humphrey will be a solid test for Jake Major and the interior of the Longhorns offensive line, but outside of Humphrey nothing truly jumps off the screen about the Louisiana defensive front.

Final Thoughts

This will be the toughest opener Texas has played in a long time. Many will point to Maryland in 2017 and 2018, but the fact of the matter is 2021 Louisiana would have beaten those Maryland teams by double digits. The good news for Steve Sarkisian is he inherits an experienced team that has veterans at key spots. The biggest strength of the team is along the defensive line and Louisiana has traditionally leaned heavily on the running game to set up their offense.

The biggest question heading into Saturday is can Texas consistency move the ball on the Louisiana defense? If the answer if yes, then the Longhorns should open the season with a win. If the running game bogs down and Louisiana is able to force a couple of turnovers, it is going to be a nail-biting opening game in Austin.

"10 of 12 starters for the Ragin' Cajuns defense will be upperclassman."

Well, if they are going to play 12 players on defense, Sark better have a damn good game plan 🙂

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5 hours ago, Jameson McCausland said:

image.png.4e2c5c1701b7a182bb10c2058857debf.png

It is officially game week and the Steve Sarkisian era is set to begin Saturday afternoon inside DKR. The Longhorns will be tested right off the bat as they welcome the Louisiana Rajin' Cajuns to Austin. Billy Napier's team returns 20 of 22 starters and is looking to build off a 2020 campaign that ended in a 10-1 record, with the lone hiccup being a 3-point loss to Coastal Carolina. Let's take a look at what the Longhorns can expect when they take the field in their season opener.

Offense

QB Levi Lewis is the straw that stirs the drink for the Louisiana offense. Lewis is entering his 3rd year as the starter and is very comfortable in Billy Napier's system. He does a good job of taking care of the football and knowing his limitations. The Louisiana coaching staff won't ask Lewis to push the ball down the field often, but they do a solid job of playing to their QB's strengths and knowing weak spots in defenses. The stats show Lewis only rushed for 335 yards a season ago, but Texas will have to account for the QB in the run game. Lewis has the athleticism to make plays with his legs and has good pocket presence. He frustrated defenses often last season with his ability to avoid sacks.

The Rajin' Cajuns will be replacing their two leading rushers (Elijah Mitchell and Trey Ragas) from 2020. Sophomore Chris Smith will be asked to step up in their place after serving more as a gadget player last year. Smith is 5'9 195 pounds and can fly. He will be especially dangerous in the return game. Texas would be wise to kick the ball out of the back of the endzone any chance they get. The RB situation behind Smith is a little murky. Emani Bailey and T.J Wisham should both see playing time, but the duo has only combined for 25 carries in their careers so they are unknowns at this point.

Pretty much every notable receiver returns for Louisiana in 2021. Kyren Lacy led the team in receptions and yards last season as a true freshman and will likely emerge as the #1 receiver. Jalen Williams and Peter LeBlanc will also see targets. One interesting note on the wide receiver group as a whole is there does not appear to be many speed burners. The Rajin' Cajuns will look to create 1 v 1 matchups in the passing game and use the physicality of their experienced receivers. 

Along the offensive line, Louisiana returns all 5 starters and kept Levi Lewis upright pretty much the whole season in 2020. The offensive line unit only allowed 9 total sacks in 11 games. The lack of pressure can be attributed to quality play up front along with the heavy reliance on the quick passing game. Louisiana did have to replace their offensive line coach this offseason after previous OL coach Rob Sale left the program to join the New York Giants. 

Defense

10 of 12 starters for the Ragin' Cajuns defense will be upperclassman. The strength of the defense a season ago was defending the pass and all 5 starters in the secondary return. The safety duo of Bralen Trahan and Percy Butler is far and away the best in the Sun Belt and both would start at most power 5 schools. 

The weakness of the defense is defending the run, which surely jumped out to Steve Sarkisian as he was watching film over the last few weeks. Louisiana allowed over 180 rushing yards per game a season ago and almost 4.3 yards per rushing attempt. There is little doubt the Longhorns will look to establish the run early with Bijan Robinson to test the Louisiana defense and take pressure off Hudson Card. 

Despite the experience returning along the defensive line, Texas should have the advantage in the trenches on offense. Defensive tackle Tayland Humphrey will be a solid test for Jake Major and the interior of the Longhorns offensive line, but outside of Humphrey nothing truly jumps off the screen about the Louisiana defensive front.

Final Thoughts

This will be the toughest opener Texas has played in a long time. Many will point to Maryland in 2017 and 2018, but the fact of the matter is 2021 Louisiana would have beaten those Maryland teams by double digits. The good news for Steve Sarkisian is he inherits an experienced team that has veterans at key spots. The biggest strength of the team is along the defensive line and Louisiana has traditionally leaned heavily on the running game to set up their offense.

The biggest question heading into Saturday is can Texas consistency move the ball on the Louisiana defense? If the answer if yes, then the Longhorns should open the season with a win. If the running game bogs down and Louisiana is able to force a couple of turnovers, it is going to be a nail-biting opening game in Austin.

"This will be the toughest opener Texas has played in a long time. Many will point to Maryland in 2017 and 2018, but the fact of the matter is 2021 Louisiana would have beaten those Maryland teams by double digits."

I am not saying that Maryland would beat Louisiana. But I am saying that if both teams played the same schedule, their records would be closer than what they currently indicate. Maryland plays a much tougher schedule than Louisiana does. 

 

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6 minutes ago, North Texas Golfer said:

"This will be the toughest opener Texas has played in a long time. Many will point to Maryland in 2017 and 2018, but the fact of the matter is 2021 Louisiana would have beaten those Maryland teams by double digits."

I am not saying that Maryland would beat Louisiana. But I am saying that if both teams played the same schedule, their records would be closer than what they currently indicate. Maryland plays a much tougher schedule than Louisiana does. 

 

Agreed on the scheduling front. Louisiana likely doesn't go 10-1 playing a Big 10 schedule last year but I also think they do much better than the 4-8 record Maryland put together in 2017 or the 5-7 record they had in 2018. 

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3 minutes ago, Jameson McCausland said:

Agreed on the scheduling front. Louisiana likely doesn't go 10-1 playing a Big 10 schedule last year but I also think they do much better than the 4-8 record Maryland put together in 2017 or the 5-7 record they had in 2018. 

Well, we are talking about a Louisiana team that beat Georgia State by 3, Georgia Southern by 2, UAB by 4, Texas State by 10, Arkansas State by 7, Appalachian State by 3, and UTSA by 7. 

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5 hours ago, North Texas Golfer said:

Well, we are talking about a Louisiana team that beat Georgia State by 3, Georgia Southern by 2, UAB by 4, Texas State by 10, Arkansas State by 7, Appalachian State by 3, and UTSA by 7. 

Here’s to hoping the 17-pt Iowa State win was a fluke.

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6 hours ago, sporty said:

Here’s to hoping the 17-pt Iowa State win was a fluke.

An argument can definitely be made that the Iowa State game was indeed flukey. 

First, the way ULL played the rest of their schedule does not indicate a team that should beat a team the caliber of Iowa State. 

Second, was the game itself. 

Louisiana returned a kickoff 95 yards for a touchdown, scored on a 78 yard pass play, and returned a punt 83 yards for a touchdown. And they scored their final touchdown with 10 seconds to go in the game. 

Their QB completed 13 passes for 154 yards with 78 of them coming on one play. The other 12 completions went for only 74 yards. ULL's offense had 272 yards total yards in the game. They had 1 play of 78 yards and the other 55 plays went for only 194 yards. 

Out of their 10 drives, 6 of them consisted of 25 plays for a total of 24 yards.

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3 hours ago, North Texas Golfer said:

An argument can definitely be made that the Iowa State game was indeed flukey. 

First, the way ULL played the rest of their schedule does not indicate a team that should beat a team the caliber of Iowa State. 

Second, was the game itself. 

Louisiana returned a kickoff 95 yards for a touchdown, scored on a 78 yard pass play, and returned a punt 83 yards for a touchdown. And they scored their final touchdown with 10 seconds to go in the game. 

Their QB completed 13 passes for 154 yards with 78 of them coming on one play. The other 12 completions went for only 74 yards. ULL's offense had 272 yards total yards in the game. They had 1 play of 78 yards and the other 55 plays went for only 194 yards. 

Out of their 10 drives, 6 of them consisted of 25 plays for a total of 24 yards.

Early lead and managed the game well. They really shortened that game knowing they had a lead to protect. Ran it about 65% of the time. Most importantly they completely shut down Purdy. By far the worst game I've ever seen him play. Secondary played well

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14 minutes ago, TB14 said:

Early lead and managed the game well. They really shortened that game knowing they had a lead to protect. Ran it about 65% of the time. Most importantly they completely shut down Purdy. By far the worst game I've ever seen him play. Secondary played well

crap!....you mean they know how to "turtle" and win?.......doomed!

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17 hours ago, Jameson McCausland said:

Agreed on the scheduling front. Louisiana likely doesn't go 10-1 playing a Big 10 schedule last year but I also think they do much better than the 4-8 record Maryland put together in 2017 or the 5-7 record they had in 2018. 

I’m not sure they would have been much better. In 2018 Maryland their 7 losses were to:  

Ohio State #6, Penn State #12, Michigan #7, Mich St 7-6, Indiana 5-7, Iowa 9-4, and Temple 8-5. 

last years ULaLa team probably wouldn’t have won many of those. I’d say 1 or 2. That temple team was 7-1 in their conference. 

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7 hours ago, North Texas Golfer said:

An argument can definitely be made that the Iowa State game was indeed flukey. 

First, the way ULL played the rest of their schedule does not indicate a team that should beat a team the caliber of Iowa State. 

Second, was the game itself. 

Louisiana returned a kickoff 95 yards for a touchdown, scored on a 78 yard pass play, and returned a punt 83 yards for a touchdown. And they scored their final touchdown with 10 seconds to go in the game. 

Their QB completed 13 passes for 154 yards with 78 of them coming on one play. The other 12 completions went for only 74 yards. ULL's offense had 272 yards total yards in the game. They had 1 play of 78 yards and the other 55 plays went for only 194 yards. 

Out of their 10 drives, 6 of them consisted of 25 plays for a total of 24 yards.

There's that geek we know and love lol

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  • 2021 Texas Football Schedule

    Week
    Opponent
    W/L
    9/4
    Louisiana
    W 38-18
    9/11
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    L 21-40
    9/18
    Rice
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    9/25
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