Oct. 5, 2013
Tulane 24, North Texas 21
Tulane Game 6
New Orleans, La.
Saturday's game marked the first-ever meeting between Tulane and North Texas on the gridiron. The Green Wave are 2-1 against first-time foes this season with a 24-7 win over Jackson State back on Aug. 29 and a 41-39 loss to South Alabama on Sept. 7.
With the win, Tulane improves to 4-2 on the year and 2-0 in Conference USA contests. It marks the first time the Green Wave has four wins through six games since and started 2-0 in league play since 1998 when Tulane finished 12-0 and won the C-USA title with a 6-0 conference record.
The victory also was the 500th in the history of the Green Wave program. Tulane is now 500-608-38 in 118-plus seasons dating back to 1893.
Combined with the Wave's 31-14 victory at ULM last week, Tulane has now won back-to-back contests for the first time since 2009 when the team downed McNeese State 42-32 on Sept. 26 in the Superdome and Army 17-16 on Oct. 3 in West Point, N.Y. It also marks the first time the Green Wave earned consecutive win over NCAA Division I-FBS teams since 2008 when Tulane downed ULM 24-10 on Sept. 20 and SMU 34-27 on Sept 25. Both of those games were in the Superdome.
Combined with Tulane's 24-15 win at Louisiana Tech back on Sept. 12 at Joe Aillet Stadium, the Green Wave have now won consecutive Conference USA games since the 2007 campaign when they defeated UTEP 34-19 on Nov. 10 in the Superdome and Rice 45-31 on Nov. 17 in Houston.
The victory was Tulane's first homecoming win since defeating Army, 42-28, on Oct, 28, 2006.
The Green Wave defense held North Texas to just 34 yards rushing on 20 carries (1.7 avg.), marking the second consecutive game Tulane held a foe to under 50 yards rushing. Last week at ULM, Tulane held the Warhawks to 26 yards on 24 carries.
With a pair of interceptions in the ballgame, the Tulane defense posted its fifth multiple-turnover outing of the season. The Green Wave entered with an NCAA-best 17 turnovers, including six against Jackson State on Aug. 29 and five last week at ULM.
Senior Derrick Strozier's 62-yard return of a blocked field goal for a touchdown in the third quarter marked the first time in team history that the Green Wave scored after blocking a field goal attempt. Sophomore FS Darion Monroe's block of a Zach Paul kick was the first by a Tulane player since Julius Warmsley did so against SMU on Oct. 13, 2012.
Sophomore CB Lorenzo Doss's 59-yard touchdown return of an interception was the first pick-six by a Tulane player since Ryan Travis had a 73-yard interception return for a score against Rice on Nov, 3, 2012. It was his second interception of the day, marking the second multiple-pick game of his career and the first by a Tulane player since Doss himself had two interceptions against UAB on Oct. 27, 2012.
Doss' two interceptions gives him four for the year and nine for his career. He is now tied for 10th place in the Tulane career record book in the category, equaling the marks of Jimmy Glisson from 1948-49, Joe Bullard from 1969-71, David Lee from 1972-74 and Tra Boger from 2001-05 (Boger played in two games in 2004 before receiving a medical redshirt).
Senior PK Cairo Santos' 27-yard field goal as time expired was the first game-winning field goal of his career and the second-game winning points of his career. Santos broke a 26-all tie with a PAT to give Tulane a 27-26 win over SMU on last Oct. 13 in the Superdome. The last time the Green Wave won with a game-winning field goal as time expired was back on Oct. 3, 2009, when Ross Thevenot nailed a 23-yard boot to lift Tulane to a 17-16 win at Army.
For his career, Santos has now scored 267 points after connecting on 52-of-65 field goals (.800) and 111-of-114 PATs (.974). In the Tulane career record book, he moved into fourth place in total point scored (leaping Bill Banker's 263 from 1927-29) and into sole possession of fifth place in field goal attempts (breaking a tie of 63 by Todd Wiggins from 1987-89 and Tony Wood from 1981-84) while remaining first in field goal percentage, second in field goals made, third in PATs made, PAT attempts and points scored kicking, and fifth in PAT percentage.
With seven receptions for 60 yards, senior WR Ryan Grant extended his consecutive games with a catch streak to 26 on Saturday against North Texas. The last time Grant - who missed the final 12 games of the 2011 season due to injury - failed to catch a pass in a game he played in came on Oct. 9, 2010, against Army. He now has multiple-catch outings in each of his last 11 contests.
For his career, Grant has now caught 159 passes for 2,251 yards (14.2 avg.) and 16 touchdowns. In the Tulane career record book, he moved into ninth in receptions (leaping P.J. Franklin's 158 from 1995-98) while remaining tied for fifth in 100-yard games (10), eighth in receiving yards, tied for ninth in touchdown catches and 10th in yards per catch.
With 44 rushing yards on 16 carries, senior RB Orleans Darkwa has now run 561 times for 2,437 yards (4.34 avg.) and 33 touchdowns for his career. In the Tulane career record book, he remains second in rushing touchdowns, fourth in rushing attempts and fifth in both rushing yards and 100-yard games (8)
Freshman Jarrod Franklin earned his first career start on Saturday, opening the game at nickelback. He becomes the 10th Tulane player and fourth freshman to earn his first career start this season. Redshirt-freshman WR Devon Breaux, redshirt-freshman LG Nathan Shienle, sophomore LT Arturo Uzdavinis, senior DT Chris Davenport, junior DE Andre Robinson and freshman LB Nico Marley all earned their first starts in the season opener against Jackson State on Aug. 29, senior DE Jeremy Peeples did so at Louisiana Tech on Sept. 12, and the duo of redshirt-freshman Kedrick Banks and junior DE Tyler Gilbert followed suit at Syracuse on Sept. 21.