Nov. 5, 2010
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RUSTON, La. - Louisiana Tech (3-5, 2-2 WAC) returns home for the "Battle of the Bone" as Louisiana's Bulldogs host the Fresno State Bulldogs (5-2, 3-1 WAC) on Saturday, Nov. 6 at 3 p.m. CT. The game will be broadcast on the WAC Sports Network with Dave Harbison calling the play-by-play, Joe Glenn providing analysis and Ralph Gaston reporting from the sideline.
Last Time Out
Lennon Creer ran for more yards against Boise than any single team has this year but Creer's two touchdowns and Ross Jenkins' 32-yard touchdown pass to Phillip Livas wasn't enough to overcome the second-ranked team in the country. Louisiana Tech fell, 49-20, at No. 2 Boise State in front of 32,026 as Tech put up 394 yards of offense on the nation's No. 1 ranked defense.
Battle of the Bone
Today's game marks the annual "Battle of the Bone" game as both Louisiana Tech and Fresno State claim the nickname "Bulldogs."
Lennon Creer is on a Tear
Tech running back Lennon Creer has been on a tear recently, recording three consecutive games with more than 100 rushing yards. His career-best day game in Tech's last home game against Idaho with 179 rushing yards but one of his most notable days was on Oct. 26 when Creer ran for 149 yards at No. 2 Boise State. Despite being ranked No. 1 in the nation in rushing defense and total defense, Boise State watched as Creer ran for more yards against the Broncos than any single team has done this year. Creer's numbers are even more impressive considering he ran for more yards against No. 2 Boise State than Jacquizz Rogers (Oregon State), Ryan Williams (Virginia Tech) and Darren Evans (Virignia Tech) had against the Broncos - combined.
Scoring Superlatives Set at Boise State
Louisiana Tech's offense has begun to click lately and that was evident when Tech played at No. 2 Boise State, facing the nation's No. 1 ranked defense. In that game - a game in which Tech scored more points on Boise on the blue turf than any other team has done this year and the seventh most allowed in Boise in the Chris Petersen era - Louisiana Tech recorded the season's most plays in a scoring drive (14), the least amount of time for a scoring drive (1:21) and the most amount of time in a scoring drive (5:23) showing that this no-huddle, high octane offense that Sonny Dykes has brought to Tech can score quickly or grind out the clock against any opponent.
Navigating a Tough Trail
Sonny Dykes has more of a challenge than just installing a new offense and rebuilding a program this season but Tech's new head coach has had a tough trail to navigate while doing so. Entering this week's game against Fresno State, Louisiana Tech's opponents to date have a record of 42-22 (.656) and Tech has a strength of schedule ranked 41st in the nation, second in the WAC only to San Jose State. So far Tech has faced one BCS team (Texas A&M), one ranked team (No. 2 Boise State) and one team that probably should be ranked (Hawai'i). Another ranked team (Nevada, Dec. 4) awaits on Tech's schedule along with three other tough conference games.
Numbers Breakdown: Creer vs. Fresno State
Entering Saturday's game against Fresno State, the California Bulldogs are allowing their opponents to notch an average of 152.4 rushing yards per game, a mark that ranks 62nd in the nation. Meanwhile, Louisiana Tech's running backs are averaging 155.2 rushing yards per game. Lennon Creer leads the way with an average of 89.6 yards per game but has registered an average of 149.33 yards per game over the last three games.
Setting the Stage for a Lot of Sacks...Again?
Saturday's game against Fresno State could be a tough day on the quarterbacks as Fresno State enters the game ranked third in the nation in sacks but only 88th in sacks allowed. This marks the second consecutive home game in which Tech has hosted a team ranked in the top five in the nation in sacks as Idaho (Oct. 16) was ranked fourth in the nation in sacks when they visited Joe Aillet Stadium. Meanwhile, Tech's defensive line has been active lately led by junior defensive end Matt Broha who currently ranks sixth in school history with 12.5 career sacks, including one recorded last Tuesday at No. 2 Boise State against Heisman Trophy candidate Kellen Moore.
Keep the Trend Going!
Entering this week's game against Fresno State, three consecutive Louisiana Tech opponents have started the game off on the wrong foot. Tech's last three opponents -Utah State, Idaho and No. 2 Boise State - have all started the game by missing a field goal attempt on their first drive. That makes four of Tech's opponents having missed a field goal attempt on their first possession as Texas A&M also missed a field goal attempt on their first drive of the game against Tech on Sept. 11. So far this season, only Grambling (Sept. 4) and Navy (Sept. 18) have scored on their opening possession with the Tigers kicking a field goal and the Midshipmen scoring a touchdown.
Limiting Big Plays Key to Defensive Success
In the postgame press conference following Tech's 24-6 win over Utah State, Adrien Cole may have been joking when he said that limiting Utah State to one explosive play compared to Hawai'i's 11 was the difference between a 200 yard offensive performance and a 600 yard offensive performance, but he was actually right on the money in that statement. Hawai'i had 21 big plays that accounted for 439 yards on Oct. 2 while on Oct. 9, Tech allowed Utah State 452 yards fewer than Hawai'i.
For complete coverage of Bulldog Football, please visit the official home of Louisiana Tech Athletics at LATechSports.com.