Head Coach: Greg Davis
Coach Greg Davis entered the 1990 campaign with aspirations for his first winning season, but instead finished 4-7. Southwestern Louisiana rolled to a 48-6 win in the opener, but Davis rallied his troops to wins over Rice and SMU. A five-game losing streak ensued, but the team responded, bashing Cincinnati 49-7 and upsetting Syracuse on the road, 26-24. The season ended with a 16-13 loss to LSU in Tiger Stadium.
Running back Chance Miller had a big year for the Wave as his 805 yards rushing were the most by a Tulane runner since 1981. Against LSU, Miller's 158 yards were the most by a Tulane back since 1978. Quarterback Deron Smith closed his Tulane career with another 2,000-yard passing season. Wide receiver Melvin Ferdinand led TU with 57 catches.
Ranking Date Opponent Location Tul/Opp Score Result Attendance S1 UL-Lafayette New Orleans, La. 6-48 L 29,298 S8 at Rice Houston, Texas 21-10 W 20,200 S15 SMU New Orleans, La. 43-7 W 20,434 S22 Florida State New Orleans, La. NR/2 13-31 L 32,170 S29 at Ole Miss Oxford, Miss. 21-31 L 20,500 O6 at Memphis Memphis, Tenn. 14-21 L 26,759 O13 Southern Miss New Orleans, La. 14-20 L 26,662 O20 Mississippi State New Orleans, La. 17-38 L 22,826 O27 Cincinnati New Orleans, La. 49-7 W 21,548 N10 at Syracuse Syracuse, N.Y. 26-24 W 48,488 N24 at LSU Baton Rouge, La. 13-16 L 67,435
Head Coach: Greg Davis
The 1991 season was one of the most trying in Tulane football annals, as the Green Wave struggled to a 1-10 record. The season opened with nine consecutive losses before Tulane whipped Navy. In game three against Mississippi State, Tulane was shut out for the first time since 1977 (152 games), and it happened twice more before the season was over.
While the team struggled, there were some individual accomplishments of note. Sophomore Wil Ursin caught 70 passes for 969 yards and nine TDs to post one of the top single-season performances in Tulane history. Against East Carolina, Ursin caught a TU-record 15 passes, including three TD receptions in the second half. The next week, he caught three more TDs against Navy to spark Tulane to its only win of the season.
Jerome Woods and Billy Duncan shared the quarterback spot, and for the first time in school history two players passed for more than 1,000 yards each. Defensively, freshman safety Mike Staid led the team with 108 tackles and three interceptions.
Ranking Date Opponent Location Tul/Opp Score Result Attendance A31 Ole Miss New Orleans, La. 3-22 L 32,879 S7 at Florida State Tallahassee, Fla. NR/1 11-38 L 61,801 S14 at Mississippi State Starkville, Miss. NR/25 0-48 L 36,429 S21 Rice New Orleans, La. 19-28 L 18,475 S28 Syracuse New Orleans, La. 0-24 L 19,729 O5 SMU New Orleans, La. 17-31 L 19,708 O12 at Alabama Tuscaloosa, Ala. NR/19 0-62 L 70,123 O19 at Southern Miss Hattiesburg, Miss. 14-47 L 16,558 N2 at East Carolina Greenville, N.C. 28-38 L 31,126 N9 Navy New Orleans, La. 34-7 W 23,322 N23 LSU New Orleans, La. 20-39 L 38,384
Head Coach: Buddy Teevens
The Buddy Teevens era began on a bright note as the Green Wave won its season opener over SMU by a score of 13-12. Three weeks later, Tulane beat Nevada, 34-17, to improve to 2-2. However, the Green Wave did not win again and finished 2-9.
Starting quarterback Billy Duncan broke his right ankle in game three, and the Green Wave felt his absence. After the 2-2 start, Tulane battled eventual national champion Alabama fiercely in game five, holding the Crimson Tide without a touchdown for nearly three quarters before losing 37-0. Narrow losses the next two weeks, followed by a blowout loss to Memphis, ended Tulane's slim hopes for a winning season.
Slowed by injuries, fullback Chance Miller rushed for 306 yards and ended a fine career as the fifth-leading rusher in Tulane history with 2,023 yards. Wil Ursin led the team 55 receptions for 755 yards. Defensively, Mike Staid led Tulane in tackles (133) and interceptions (3) for the second consecutive year.
Ranking Date Opponent Location Tul/Opp Score Result Attendance S5 at SMU Dallas, Texas 13-12 W 15,100 S12 at Ole Miss Oxford, Miss. 9-35 L 30,200 S19 at Iowa State Ames, Iowa 14-38 L 38,913 S26 Nevada New Orleans, La. 34-17 W 23,741 O10 Alabama New Orleans, La. NR/6 0-37 L 50,240 O15 Southern Miss New Orleans, La. 7-17 L 21,760 O24 Boston College New Orleans, La. NR/11 13-17 L 25,646 O31 Memphis New Orleans, La. 20-62 L 20,936 N7 at Navy Annapolis, Md. 17-20 L 21,912 N14 at Florida State Tallahassee, Fla. NR/5 7-70 L 60,127 N21 at LSU Baton Rouge, La. 12-24 L 59,919
Head Coach: Buddy Teevens
Year two of the Teevens era - the 100th year of Tulane football- produced an improved product. In the opener against Alabama, Jerald Sowell broke off the longest play from scrimmage in school history with a 98-yard run. In the home opener against William & Mary, the Wave pitched a 10-0 shutout, Tulane's first blanking since 1973. Two weeks later, the Green Wave defeated Navy 27-25 on Bart Baldwin's 43-yard field goal as time expired. Tulane also won at Southern Mississippi, 17-15.
Newcomer Craig Randall started 10 games at quarterback and passed for 1,565 yards. Sowell was the leading rusher with 403 yards and Wil Ursin had his third consecutive 50-reception season. Mike Staid led Tulane in tackles for the third straight year with 133.
Ranking Date Opponent Location Tul/Opp Score Result Attendance S4 at Alabama# Birmingham, Ala. NR/2 17-31 W 83,091 S11 at Rice Houston, Texas 0-34 L 23,400 S18 William & Mary New Orleans, La. 10-0 W 20,517 S25 Mississippi State New Orleans, La. 10-36 L 28,580 O2 at Navy Annapolis, Md. 27-25 W 21,117 O9 UL-Lafayette New Orleans, La. 15-36 L 25,970 O16 at TCU Fort Worth, Texas 7-14 L 20,987 O30 at Boston College Boston, Mass. 14-42 L 33,298 N6 at Southern Miss Hattiesburg, Miss. 17-15 W 16,397 N13 North Carolina New Orleans, La. 10-42 L 20,492 N20 at LSU Baton Rouge, La. 10-24 L 58,190 D4 at Hawai'i Honolulu, Hawai'i 17-56 L 27,541 #Alabama later forfeited game
Head Coach: Buddy Teevens
Buddy Teevens' third season produced only one victory, but had its share of exciting moments. The one win came at Rice, 15-13, on a 47-yard field goal by Bart Baldwin as time expired, his school-record fifth field goal of the day. Kick returner Jeff Liggon had a huge season, setting an NCAA record for kickoff return yards and tying another for number of kickoffs returned. Safety Mike Staid, who started all 45 games in which he played at Tulane, ended his career as the No. 2 tackler in school history with 481. Fellow safety, Cedric Thomas, ended his career in a big way against LSU with two touchdowns - one on a fumble return, the other on a blocked punt recovery in the end zone. Running back Jerald Sowell became the first player in school history to have 600 yards rushing and 30 receptions in the same season.
Ranking Date Opponent Location Tul/Opp Score Result Attendance S3 Southern Miss New Orleans, La. 10-25 L 24,786 S10 at Rice Houston, Texas 15-13 W 15,400 S17 at North Carolina Chapel Hill, N.C. NR/16 0-49 L 43,000 S24 at Alabama Birmingham, Ala. NR/10 10-20 L 81,421 O8 at Memphis Memphis, Tenn. 0-13 L 19,400 O15 TCU New Orleans, La. 28-30 L 23,561 O22 at Mississippi State Starkville, Miss. 22-66 L 30,169 O29 at Maryland College Park, Md. 10-38 L 24,456 N5 Navy New Orleans, La. 15-17 L 20,603 N12 Ole Miss New Orleans, La. 0-38 L 25,644 N19 LSU New Orleans, La. 25-49 L 32,067
Head Coach: Buddy Teevens
The fourth season under Buddy Teevens marked the end of an era - Tulane's last season as an independent. The Green Wave defeated Wake Forest and Rice on consecutive weekends to jump out to a 2-1 start, but starting quarterback Aley Demarest was injured in the next game and freshman Shaun King was pressed into action.
King became the first rookie in school history to pass for more than 1,000 yards, and Jamaican Dartez made his mark as the most prolific freshman rusher in school history with 544 yards and 10 touchdowns.
Four of Tulane's nine losses were by less than a touchdown, including a wild 45-40 shootout against Rutgers in which King passed for 372 yards. Linebacker Derrick Singleton led Tulane with 126 tackles.
Ranking Date Opponent Location Tul/Opp Score Result Attendance S2 Maryland New Orleans, La. 10-29 L 18,159 S9 Wake Forest New Orleans, La. 35-9 W 16,368 S16 at Rice Houston, Texas 17-15 W 18,100 S30 at Southern Miss Hattiesburg, Miss. 0-45 L 27,141 O7 at Ole Miss Oxford, Miss. 17-20 L 26,683 O14 Memphis New Orleans, La. 8-23 L 19,894 O21 at TCU Fort Worth, Texas 11-16 L 25,421 O28 UL-Lafayette New Orleans, La. 28-32 L 20,801 N4 at Louisville Louisville, Ky. 14-34 L 33,271 N11 Rutgers New Orleans, La. 40-45 L 16,098 N18 at Navy Annapolis, Md. 7-35 L 19,815
1996 (2-9, 1-4 C-USA)
Head Coach: Buddy Teevens
Tulane's fifth and final season under Buddy Teevens resulted in a 2-9 record. The year got off to a rousing start when the Wave traveled to Cincinnati and won the first game in Conference USA history, 34-14. Tulane would lead at halftime in each of its final four conference games, but each by a total of 16 points, including two on last-second field goals.
Shaun King started all 11 games at quarterback and passed for 1,574 yards and eight touchdowns. Jerald Sowell (595 yards) and Jamaican Dartez (583) formed one of the best back tandems in school history. Brian Williams led the defense with 100 tackles, while Derrick Singleton had 77 tackles and three interceptions in only eight games. On special teams, Jeff Liggon set two NCAA career records for kickoff returns and was named the conference's special teams player of the year.
Ranking Date Opponent Location Tul/Opp Score Result Attendance A30 at Cincinnati* Cincinnati, Ohio 34-14 W 26,493 S14 Rice New Orleans, La. 14-21 L 38,839 S21 at Memphis* Memphis, Tenn. 10-17 L 27,386 O5 TCU New Orleans, La. 35-7 W 14,341 O12 Louisville* New Orleans, La. 20-23 L 17,561 O19 at Army West Point, N.Y. 10-34 L 35,971 O26 Southern Miss* New Orleans,, La. NR/24 28-31 L 20,394 N2 Houston* New Orleans, La. 17-20 L 14,474 N9 Syracuses New Orleans, La. NR/24 7-31 L 13,537 N16 at Navy Annapolis, Md. 21-35 L 24,952 N23 at LSU Baton Rouge, La. NR/18 17-35 L 78,966
1997 (7-4, 5-1 C-USA)
Head Coach: Tommy Bowden
After opening the season with a 31-17 win over Cincinnati and tough losses to Rice and Syracuse, Tulane won three consecutive games, outscoring the opposition by a combined 138-49. Defensively, Tulane allowed 20.5 points per game, the fewest since 1981, and the Green Wave posted two shutouts in a season for the first time since 1973.
The Green Wave had a pair of 50-point games in one season for the first time since 1930, and scored at least 40 points on four occasions for the first time since 1928. Besides setting a C-USA record, the 64 points scored against Louisville were the most by a Tulane team since 1950.
Individually, King earned C-USA Offensive Player of the Year honors after throwing for nearly 2,600 yards and a school-record 25 touchdowns. Kicker Brad Palazzo led the nation in field goals per game and earned third-team All-America honors, the first Tulane player to do so since 1987.
Ranking Date Opponent Location Tul/Opp Score Result Attendance S6 Cincinnati* New Orleans, La. 31-17 W 20,828 S13 Rice New Orleans, La. 24-30 L 19,602 S20 at Syracuse Syracuse, N.Y. 19-30 L 42,246 O4 Army New Orleans, La. 41-0 W 16,242 O11 at Louisville* Louisville, Ky. 64-33 W 29,547 O18 East Carolina* New Orleans, La. 33-16 W 23,340 O25 at Southern Miss* Hattiesburg, Miss. 13-34 L 26,092 N1 at UL-Lafayette Lafayette, La. 56-0 W 17,724 N8 Memphis* New Orleans, La. 26-14 W 23,494 N15 Ole Miss New Orleans, La. 24-41 L 35,607 N22 at Houston* Houston, Texas 44-10 W 11,618
1998 (12-0, 6-0 C-USA)
Head Coach: Tommy Bowden
The most successful season in the first 107 years of Tulane football was put together one game at a time. Some games were no contest from beginning to end, some saw Tulane romp early and coast home, some were hotly-contested until Tulane pulled away at the end, and one came down to the last play of the game.
When it was over, Tulane was 12-0. The 1998 team was the first Tulane squad to win 12 games in a season and the third unbeaten, untied squad in school history. Only one opponent, Louisville, was within a touchdown at game's end.
The 1998 team scored 499 points, 124 more than any previous Green Wave team had scored. The Wave scored at least 40 points in nine of 12 games, including the final seven contests of the year.
Shaun King broke almost every Tulane season and career passing record, becaming the first NCAA I-A player to amass 3,000 yards passing and 500 yards rushing in a season, and he established an NCAA I-A passing efficiency record of 183.3.
Statistics do not begin to describe the game-by-game impact that King's 38 TD passes and 11 rushing touchdowns had on Tulane's unbeaten run to the Conference USA championship, a decisive win over Brigham Young in the Liberty Bowl and a season-ending No. 7 national ranking.
The 1998 season began with road wins over Cincinnati and SMU as the Green Wave jumped out to big leads and never looked back. The home opener against Navy followed the same script, as King tossed a pair of TDs each to P.J. Franklin and JaJuan Dawson.
Next, Tulane prepared for a battle with C-USA power Southern Miss. To heighten the drama, King had broken his left wrist during the Navy game and was forced to play the remainder of the season in a soft cast. The Green Wave needed its defense to play its best game to have a chance against the defending C-USA champs, and it got just that as six USM turnovers fed a 21-7 Tulane win.
Two weeks later, Louisville gave the Green Wave its closest call of the season. With Tulane leading 28-22, the Cardinals drove to the TU three. On the last play of the game, sophomore defensive back Tim Carter broke up a pass in the end zone to seal the win.
The Green Wave exploded for 165 points the next three weeks to bury Rutgers, USL and Memphis and lift the season mark to 8-0.
The Tulane-Army game at West Point was probably the most exciting of the season. With King running for three TDs and passing for three more, Tulane and Army lit up the scoreboard. A 21-21 halftime deadlock turned into a 28-28 tie late in the third quarter. Then, Toney Converse ran for a TD and King cashed in an Army turnover with a TD pass to Dawson to put the Green Wave ahead 42-28. Army, however, responded and it was up to the Tulane offense to preserve a 42-35 lead. King capped a long drive with a 20-yard TD scramble to clinch win number nine. King became the first Tulane player to run for 100 yards and throw for 300 yards in the same game.
Houston and Louisiana Tech did their best to derail Tulane's drive to a perfect season, but there was no stopping the Wave, especially at home.
Sporting an 11-0 record, C-USA champion Tulane met the nation's No. 5 defensive team, BYU, in the Liberty Bowl on New Year's Eve. Before a national television audience, King passed and ran the Green Wave to a 34-6 lead after three quarters on the way to a 41-27 win.
Shortly after the regular season ended, Coach Tommy Bowden announced that he had taken the head coaching job at Clemson, and the Liberty Bowl win was coached by new head coach Chris Scelfo and Bowden's assistants.
FINAL RANKING: 7th AP
Conference USA Champions
Ranking Date Opponent Location Tul/Opp Score Result Attendance S5 at Cincinnati* Cincinnati, Ohio 52-34 W 20,721 S12 at SMU Dallas, Texas 31-21 W 12,316 S26 Navy New Orleans, La. 42-24 W 19,371 O3 Southern Miss* New Orleans, La. 21-7 W 32,527 O17 Louisville* New Orleans, La. 24/NR 28-22 W 26,217 O24 at Rutgers Piscataway, N.J. 22/NR 52-24 W 20,714 O31 UL-Lafayette New Orleans, La. 19/NR 72-20 W 25,177 N7 at Memphis* Memphis, Tenn. 15/NR 41-31 W 18,192 N14 at Army* West Point, N.Y. 14/NR 49-35 W 39,038 N21 Houston* New Orleans, La. 12/NR 48-20 W 26,978 N26 Louisiana Tech New Orleans, La. 11/NR 63-30 W 37,391 LIBERTY BOWL D31 BYU Memphis, Tenn. 10/NR 41-27 W 52,192
1999 (3-8, 1-5 C-USA)
Head Coach: Chris Scelfo
A devastating rash of injuries combined with an inexperienced team spelled a tough season for Tulane in 1999. After an opening loss to Southern Miss, Coach Chris Scelfo rallied his young troops to impressive wins over SMU and Army and things were looking up. However, numerous injuries forced young players into critical roles.
The task of replacing Shaun King at quarterback fell on the shoulders of sophomore Patrick Ramsey. In the Green Wave's three wins, Ramsey completed 103-of-150 pass attempts for 12 touchdowns, and in narrow losses to Ole Miss, Houston and UAB, he completed 88-of-159 attempts for another eight scores.
Offensively, the Green Wave had a record-setting season behind the passing of Ramsey and the receiving duo of Adrian Burnette and JaJuan Dawson, who smashed several single-game, season and career receiving records. Freshman defensive back Quentin Brown had 50 tackles and broke up a half-dozen passes in only eight games.
The kicking game was a strong point, as Casey Roussel averaged 44.2 yards per punt and Seth Marler kicked nine consecutive field goals. The season finale against UAB, which the Green Wave lost 20-17, was the first overtime game in Tulane history.
Ranking Date Opponent Location Tul/Opp Score Result Attendance S6 at Southern Miss* Hattiesburg, Miss. 14-48 L 30,098 S11 SMU New Orleans, La. 53-19 W 20,097 S18 Army* New Orleans, La. 48-28 W 22,227 O2 at Syracuse Syracuse, N.Y. NR/19 17-47 L 48,286 O9 at Ole Miss Oxford, Miss. NR/25 13-20 L 40,914 O16 UL-Lafayette New Orleans, La. 48-32 W 24,407 O23 at East Carolina* Greenville, N.C. NR/20 7-52 L 35,021 O30 Memphis* New Orleans, La. 7-49 L 17,847 N6 at Houston* Houston, Texas 31-36 L 16,008 N13 at Navy Annapolis, Md. 21-45 L 32,840 N20 UAB* (OT) New Orleans, La. 20-23 L 18,592