Nov 22, 2003
By BRETT MARTEL
AP Sports Writer
NEW ORLEANS (AP) - J.P. Losman finished his college career with a four-touchdown, 227-yard passing performance as he led Tulane to a 28-18 victory over East Carolina on Saturday.
Losman, a top NFL prospect, finished the season with 3,077 passing yards and 33 touchdowns, leading Conference USA in both categories. Some teams in the league have one more game remaining, but no other Conference USA quarterback was within 10 touchdowns or 280 yards of Losman coming into this weekend.
With the victory over East Carolina (1-10, 1-6), Tulane (5-7, 3-5) finished one victory short of bowl eligibility and avoided losing to any teams with a losing record. All seven teams that beat Tulane this season are bowl eligible.
Marvin Townes helped ECU keep the game close with 165 yards - 108 in the first half - and two touchdowns.
Regular ECU starting quarterback Desmond Robinson was out for a second straight week with an ankle injury and was replace by freshman James Pinkney, who was 13-of-27 passing for 126 yards and was intercepted twice, with both turnovers leading to Tulane touchdowns.
The second interception, made by Byron Parker on the second play of the second half, gave Tulane the ball inside the ECU 10-yard line. Two plays later, Losman hit Chris Bush with a 9-yard pass over the middle, then found Nick Narcisse for a two-point conversion to give Tulane a 21-10 lead.
Townes' second TD run - a 36-yarder - cut the Pirates' deficit to 21-18 in
the third quarter. But Losman engineered a seven-play, 80-yard scoring drive
early in the fourth quarter to put Tulane up by the eventual final score.
Losman completed the drive by rolling right and hitting Narcisse along the
sideline from 16 yards out for his 60th and final TD for Tulane, where he was a
starter for two seasons.
Losman had first-half touchdown throws of 87 yards to Bush - the longest pass of Losman's career - and 27 yards to Roydell Williams as Tulane came back from a 7-0 deficit to take a 13-7 lead it would not relinquish.
Losman connected on 14 of 20 passes, but was intercepted once - by Kyle Chase on the Tulane 44 inside the final minute of the half - and it led to a 41-yard field goal by Cameron Broadwell that cut the score to 13-10 at halftime.
Tulane punter Chris Beckman had a 73-yard punt in the game, the longest punt ever at the Louisiana Superdome at any level of play.