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Football: UL seniors exit Cajun Field on a high

Tim Buckley, The Advertiser, Nov. 28, 2016

Click here for the photo gallery of the game.

On Senior Day at Cajun Field, UL’s outgoing upperclassmen wanted to go out right.

They did just that.

The Ragin’ Cajuns beat Arkansas State 24-19 on Saturday, doing it behind the play of both those playing their final home game and some younger teammates as well.

Senior quarterback Anthony Jennings threw for 242 yards and two touchdowns, including one each to seniors Elijah McGuire and Al Riles. Senior cornerback Christian Goodlett had a game-high 12 total tackles. And senior linebacker Otha Peters had nine tackles and a huge hit that led to an interception for a touchdown.

But it was junior Taboris Lee who scored on the pick-six initiated by Peters, and a redshirt freshman, Ja’Marcus Bradley, had four catches for a game-high 113 yards.

“This senior class, they wanted this one bad,” Cajuns coach Mark Hudspeth said. “The underclassmen wanted to win it for the seniors, to be able to take that next step and get one step closer.”

To a bowl game, that is.

It’s something 5-6 UL now can make happen by winning Saturday at UL Monroe in their regular-season finale.

“I’m putting it all out on the field for my seniors,” Lee said.

“They deserve to go out with a bang,” he said afterward. “They deserve to play in a bowl game.”

Eighteen outgoing Cajun upperclassmen were recognized during pregame ceremonies with Hudspeth, UL president Joseph Savoie, interim athletic director Jessica Leger and family members.

The list: graduate-transfer Jennings and out-for-the-season quarterback Jalen Nixon; McGuire; Riles and wideout Jared Johnson; starting tight end Nick Byrne; starting center Eddie Gordon and reserve offensive lineman Allen Cummins; starting nose tackle Karmichael Dunbar; Peters and fellow linebackers Tre’maine Lightfoot, also a starter, and Trey Granier; Goodlett and fellow defensive backs Savion Brown, Dominick Jones and Reginald Miles; and starting snapper Stephen Morella along with out-for-the-season special teams player Cole Bourque.


Before UL faced Arkansas State, several teammates watched Friday night as Peters was baptized as a Christian during a ceremony in the pool at the team’s local hotel.

“I’m a senior, about ready to go off in the real world,” Peters said, “and I just wanted to be in a good place with God.”

Peters wished his closest family members could have watched.

They did not. But Peters expressed how happy he was that teammates did.

“Besides my mom and my sister … that’s who I wanted to be with to share that special moment in my life with,” he said.


Bradley returned for UL after missing four games with an ankle sprain. But redshirt freshman Michael Jacquet, who sprained an ankle himself late in the Cajuns’ 35-21 loss at Georgia one Saturday earlier, did not dress. … UL starting defensive end Joe Dillon injured his right hand during Saturday’s second half. … In the house and watching from field level Saturday was Nicholls State head coach Tim Rebowe, a longtime former Cajuns assistant coach. … UL won the toss and deferred to the second half.