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ECU vs. ULL: Setting The Stage

Game: ECU vs. Louisiana-Lafayette
Date: Saturday, December 22, 2012
Time: 12:00 noon EST
Location: New Orleans, Louisiana
Television: ESPN
Opening Line: Louisiana -4.5

Mercedes-Benz Superdome

Team Information

East Carolina

Head Coach: Ruffin McNeill (3rd year)
2011 record: 5-7 (4-4 C-USA)
2012 record: 8-4 (7-1 C-USA)
Last game result: Defeated Marshall 66-59 (2OT)
Returning starters from 2011: 7 on offense, 7 on defense, 1 on special teams
Key offensive players:
So. QB Shane Carden (Completed 248-of-371 passes for 2,838 yards, 21 touchdowns and 9 interceptions…also has rushed for a team-best 8 touchdowns)
So. WR Justin Hardy (The team’s most consistent receiver…squad-best 83 receptions for 1,045 receiving yards and 10 touchdown receptions…caught a school-record 16 passes against Marshall)
Jr. RB Vintavious Cooper (First ‘air raid’ back to crack 1,000 yards rushing…totaled 1,030 rushing yards and 7 scores on 191 carries…averaged 5.4 yards per carry)
Key defensive players:
Jr. LB Derrell Johnson (58 tackles…leads team in sacks with 7…also the only player to have totaled double-digit tackles for loss with 11…7 QB hurries and 2 FF to his credit)
So. LB Jeremy Grove (Former Freshman All-American…One tackle behind the team’s leader…71 tackles, 4.5 TFL, 2 FF)
Jr. S Damon Magazu (Leads defense in individual tackles…The lone returning starter in the secondary from 2011…defensive captain…5 pass breakups this season…picked off his first pass of the season against Marshall)
Offensive Scheme: Spread
Defensive Scheme: 3-4, relies on disguised blitzing to create pressure
Potential Strengths: Skill position players, Front-seven depth
Potential Weaknesses: Inexperienced secondary

Louisiana-Lafayette

Head Coach: Mark Hudspeth (2nd year)
2011 record: 9-4 (6-2 Sun Belt)
2012 record: 8-4 (6-2 Sun Belt)
Last game result: Defeated FAU 35-21
Returning starters from 2011: 8 on offense, 2 on defense, 2 on special teams
Key offensive players:
So. QB Terrance Broadway (Dual-threat quarterback…Houston transfer…former 4-star QB out of HS…has thrown for 2,526 yards, 16 touchdowns and 8 interceptions…also has rushed for 8 scores)
So. RB Alonzo Harris (Physical back at 6-1, 220 pounds…team-high 149 rushing attempts for 761 yards and 8 touchdowns)
Sr. WR Harry Peoples (Leads team in receptions and receiving yards with 61 for 774, respectively…also has 5 receiving touchdowns to his credit)
Key defensive players:
Jr. LB Justin Anderson (One of the top linebackers in the Sun Belt…racked up team-high 101 tackles in ’12…totaled 8 TFL, 2 sacks, 1 interception, 1 FF, 1 FR)
Sr. LB Emeka Onyenekwu (Team’s most explosive defender…team-leader in TFL with 12.5…second on the defense with 6.5 sacks)
Sr. S Rodney Gillis (Ball-hawking safety…5 interceptions and a fumble recovery…second on the team with 69 tackles)
Offensive Scheme: Pro style
Defensive Scheme: 4-3/3-4 hybrid
Potential Strengths: Balanced offense, strong run defense
Potential Weaknesses: Pass defense

Series History

All-Time Record: Louisiana leads the all-time series 6-4
Current Streak: ULL has won four of the past five meetings
Series Fact: The Pirates and Ragin’ Cajuns met seven times during the 1980s.
First Meeting: 1977 in Greenville: UL won 9-7
Last Meeting: 1990 in Lafayette: ECU won 20-10

Quotables

ECU head coach Ruffin McNeill

On Louisiana offense "Terrance Broadway, who is a transfer from Houston, is their quarterback. He runs the ball extremely well and is an excellent passer. He really runs their offense well and is a smart football player. Alonzo Harris and Effrem Reed are their running backs. They both have good speed, but Harris is the bigger of the two backs. Harry Peoples is the top receiver. He is the guy that we need to make sure that we keep our eyes on and have a plan for him. He is Broadway's favorite target. Peoples is an excellent route runner and is very dangerous after the catch. I think one of the keys to their team is the play of their offensive line. They are very big. We have faced our fair share of large offensive lines this year in North Carolina and South Carolina, but Louisiana's will still rank as one of the largest we are facing this season.”

On health of the team "I am very thankful that we have been healthy this year and hope that it continues. I also think the depth that we have built has aided us in staying healthy this year. We have also been smart about our work. We gave the team a week off from practice after the season to heal up some lingering nicks and bruises and have been taking things slowly with our practices leading up to the bowl game. We want to go to New Orleans healthy."

On important of a Bowl victory "I think playing your best game right before the off-season is always important. There were 70 teams chosen to play in bowl games and we are honored and fortunate to be one of them. Winning the bowl game will definitely help and aid our program as we begin all our off-season preparations."

2012 Statistical Comparison

Total offense:
ECU – 407.5 ypg (58th)
ULL – 444.0 ypg (33rd)

Rushing offense:
ECU – 134.8 ypg (91st)
ULL – 187.3 ypg (39th)

Passing offense:
ECU – 272.8 ypg (35th)
ULL – 256.7 ypg (48th)

Scoring offense:
ECU – 31.3 ppg (46th)
ULL – 34.8 ppg (34th)

Sacks allowed:
ECU – 2.3 spg (T-86th)
ULL – 1.0 spg (15th)

Total defense:
ECU – 417.3 ypg (77th)
ULL – 428.7 ypg (86th)

Rushing defense:
ECU – 145.7 ypg (45th)
ULL – 144.8 ypg (43rd)

Passing defense:
ECU – 271.7 ypg (105th)
ULL – 283.9 ypg (111th)

Scoring defense:
ECU – 30.7 ppg (84th)
ULL – 27.6 ppg (60th)

Sacks:
ECU – 2.1 spg (T-53rd)
ULL – 2.2 spg (T-47th)

Turnover margin:
ECU - -1 (T-64th)
ULL - 0 (T-59th)

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