Oct. 10, 2006
NEW ORLEANS, La. - Four days after defeating Conference USA foe Rice, 38-24, the Tulane University football team returned to the practice field in preparation for a weekend showdown at UTEP Tuesday afternoon at the Westfeldt Facility.
Tulane and UTEP are slated to do battle at 8 p.m. CDT at the Sun Bowl and the Green Wave will be looking to build on the momentum accumulated in the win over the Owls. While Tulane (2-3, 1-2 C-USA) has a chance to even its overall and conference record with a win on Saturday, the Green Wave will have to battle the off-field distraction of going through mid-term examinations and the elevation in El Paso.
"We have to worry about us this week," Tulane head coach Chris Scelfo said. "We have to get better every day in practice and focus on what we have to do while going through midterms this week and next. It has to be a good balance of preparation for UTEP and preparation for midterms.
"(Focusing on football during midterms) is tough on our players. We have to be careful as coaches on what we're asking them to do and we do put a lot of emphasis on midterms."
In addition, the Green Wave will have to be ready for the change in altitude as the team will be traveling from New Orleans - which is two feet below sea level - to West Texas - which is at a 3,710-foot elevation.
"It does (affect us), but it doesn't," Scelfo said. "We're below sea level here and we've had some bad days below see level. The only time I've ever done it was in 2001 out in Utah (a 70-35 loss to BYU in Provo) and I hope we have a better performance then that. I've talked to a lot of coaches who have been out there and we've got a guy on our staff who coached at there (defensive line coach Lorenzo "Zo" Costantini). It's something that we can't let us affect us mentally and we have to watch it as coaches physically during the course of the game.
"We have to be smart on our substitution packages week in and week out, but obviously we have to be careful and listen to our players more this week then normal. If they tap out this week, then we have to get someone else in there."
Following the trip to El Paso, Tulane will play at Auburn on Oct. 21 before returning to the Superdome for Homecoming 2006 vs. Army on Oct. 28. Tickets for those game, and future Green Wave contests, remain for sale through the Tulane Athletics Ticket Office.
The Ticket Office is located on the first floor of the James W. Wilson, Jr. Center, and tickets can be purchased in person, via the telephone at (504) 861-WAVE or via the internet at www.TulaneGreenWave.com. In addition, single-game tickets are also available via Ticket Master at www.TicketMaster.com and at all Ticket Master outlets.