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Football: Ringo chasing UL sack record

Tim Buckley, The Advertiser, November 15, 2014


Ragin’ Cajuns senior defensive lineman Christian Ringo has a couple of numbers in mind.

One is 21 – UL’s career sacks record (for minus-153 yards), set by Jeff Mitchell from 1992-95.

The other is 11, UL’s sacks-in-a-season record, with the total count shared by Mitchell (minus-83 yards in 1993) and Conrad Lewis (minus-71 in ’93).

"I’ve been keeping track since my freshman year," Ringo said. "I knew what the number was my freshman year. And that’s definitely a goal that I’d feel honored, if I got it."

He’s closing in.

Heading into 6-3 UL’s game tonight at UL Monroe, Ringo has 17.5 career sacks. He needs 0.5 sacks to move into a tie for third place on the all-time list, and 3.5 to tie Mitchell for first.

With 8.0 sacks this season alone, the Mississippi high school product needs 3.5 more in UL’s three remaining games – four if it goes to a fourth straight bowl – for the single-season mark.

Potentially helping matters: In three games this season, ULM has permitted at least six sacks.

Mitchell, now a Louisiana state trooper who serves as personal protector for Cajuns head coach Mark Hudspeth at all UL home and away games, has said he’s braced for the possibility that some of his records could fall.

(He’s also UL tackles-for-loss leader in a single season with 21 in 1993, and all-time with 45.)

"I haven’t talked to him about it," Ringo said. "I know he’s the guy, though.

"It would be an honor that my name would go down for the most sacks in a single season," he added. "That would be amazing to come back … and see that in the record.

Ringo did not have any tackles-for-loss or sacks in UL’s 44-16 win at New Mexico State last Saturday night.

He did, however, had three TFLs with two sacks in each of the Cajuns’ three games prior to that – Sun Belt Conference wins over South Alabama, Arkansas State and Texas State.

He credits UL’s use of much more four-man front lately for that happenstance. Earlier, the Cajuns played extensively with a three-man front out of their 3-4/multiple base.

"We get a lot of 1-on-1s now," Ringo said, "and it helps me out a lot, with the help of (fellow defensive lineman) Justin Hamilton getting push, and I’ve got my two defensive ends.

"So," he added, "it makes it easier on me."

So Ringo must wish UL had gone to the four-man front much sooner, right?

"No, no, no," he said. "That’s (not) my focus. We’re gonna run whatever defense we run, and try to perfect that."