Feb. 4, 2013
New Orleans - Tulane University head football coach Curtis Johnson today announced the additions of three players to the Green Wave's 2013 spring roster, including defensive tackle Chris Davenport, deep snapper Michael Lizanich and cornerback Jordan Sullen, a familiar face to TU fans, returns to the squad.
The trio joins another mid-year transfer, quarterback Nick Montana, and each player is enrolled and eligible to play immediately.
A 6-4, 320-pound graduate student who will play his final collegiate season for the Green Wave, Davenport graduated from LSU with a degree in general studies and will pursue a master's degree from Tulane.
During his time at LSU, he was a three-year letterman and helped lead the Tigers to a combined 44-6 record and earn bowl bids each season, including a 13-1 mark, and Southeastern Conference championship and a spot in the BCS National Championship game as a sophomore in 2011. After redshirting as a true freshman in 2009, he played in 23 games over the next three seasons.
As a junior, Davenport played in 11 games mostly as a member of the PAT/field goal unit, but saw action in 10 contests as a sophomore in 2011, including six at left tackle where he posted three knock-down blocks in 30 snaps. He played in two games on the defensive line as a redshirt-freshman in 2010, posting an assisted tackle vs. McNeese State.
Davenport was a three-year letterman at Mansfield (La.) High for coach Donald Mayweather and was rated a five-star recruit by ESPN.com, Rivals.com and Scout.com, was tabbed the No. 4 defensive tackle in the nation by Rivals.com while claiming the No. 7 spot from ESPN.com and Scout.com.
"Chris is a big addition to our program and will have an immediate impact on our defensive line," Johnson said. "He was one of the top players in the nation coming out of high school and I expect him to have a big year for us. He is a big physical player that will make us tough on opponents' running game and his size gives him the ability to disrupt the passing game as well."
Lizanich helped lead the Pioneers to a combined 33-13 record and trips to the state playoffs all four years. He claimed All-America honors from Under Armour/Kohl's Kicking as a senior and was named first-team 5A all-state and claimed a spot on the All-Arizona Team (all divisions) as both a junior and senior. He handled all snapping duties on punts, field goals and PATs in each of his final three prep seasons, posting a perfect performance along the way en route to claiming first-team all-section honors each year.
"Michael is a valuable addition to our team as well and we are very excited to have him for the spring season. He is one of the top deep snappers in the nation according to various recruiting outlets and we look for him to come in right away and continue his same consistency on the collegiate level," Johnson said.
After a one-year hiatus from the team, Sullen returns to the Green Wave for his final season. A New Orleans native and graduate of Edna Karr High School, Sullen is a three-year letterman with career numbers of 52 tackles (36 solo, 16 assists), 2.0 tackles for loss, 10 pass break-ups and a forced fumble on defense, running three times for 25 yards and a touchdown on offense, and returning 36 kickoffs for 720 yards (20.0 avg.) on special teams for his career. He has played in 32 games with 12 starts and made successful transition from wide receiver as a freshman to cornerback over his last two years at Tulane.
During his last playing season at Tulane in 2011, Sullen started all 12 games he played in as a junior and led the team in pass break-ups (10) while ranking seventh with 42 tackles (27 solo, 15 assists) and tied for 11th in tackles for loss (1.0). He finished tied for 11th in Conference USA in pass break-ups per game (0.83).
"We are very excited to have Jordan back in the line-up. We lost starters at both safety and cornerback and we expect him to come in and compete for a starting spot in our secondary. His experience will be a great asset in our secondary," Johnson said.