Oct. 29, 2007
NEW ORLEANS, La. - On the heels of posting his fourth consecutive 200-plus yard rushing performance of the 2007 season, Tulane University football standout Matt Forté was named Louisiana Sports Writers Association Offensive Player of the Week, the LSWA announced Monday.
A senior running back from Slidell, La., Forté ran for 278 yards and two touchdowns on a school-record 44 carries and caught two passes for 15 yards in Saturday's heart-breaking 28-27 loss to Conference USA foe Memphis in the Louisiana Superdome. His yardage total was the fifth 200-plus yard effort of the year, and is one game away from tying the NCAA Division I-Bowl Subdivision record for consecutive 200-yard games.
Forté's 278 rushing yards gave him 1,539 for the season, which is a Tulane single-season record. He broke the former mark of 1,421 yards set by Mewelde Moore in 2001, and the record came on a 51-yard touchdown run with 5:22 left to play in the first half.
The Wave's big back had 79 yards on 14 carries in the first quarter, 107 yards and a touchdown on eight carries in the second, 63 yards on 12 carries in the third, and 29 yards and a touchdown on 10 carries in the fourth.
Forté leads the NCAA in rushing yards (1,539), rushing yards per game (192.38) and all-purpose yards per game (218.38). At his current pace, he would finish the year with 2,309 rushing yards, which would rank third-highest in NCAA single-season history behind USC's Marcus Allen (2,342 in 1981) and Oklahoma State's Barry Sanders (2,628 in 1988).
He owns three of the top four single-game rushing performances in 2007, including the top two marks of 342 yards vs. SMU on Oct. 20 and 303 yards vs. Southeastern Louisiana on Sept. 22. In addition, Forté holds four of the Top 54 single-game all-purpose yard performances this year, and is the only player in NCAA Division I-BSD to accomplish that feat. He is also the only non-quarterback to rank among the NCAA's Top 100 total offense leaders, ranking 78th with 192.38 yards per game (all rushing).
In Saturday's one-point loss to Memphis, Skehan posted three solo tackles - one on a third-quarter kickoff return by the Tigers - and broke up a pair of passes. The team weekly honor was Skehan's second of the season and sixth of his career dating back to last year.
Forté, Skehan and the Green Wave return to action on Saturday, Nov. 3, when they play host to C-USA foe Tulsa at 6:30 p.m. in the Louisiana Superdome. The game will be broadcast live on College Sports Television. Single-game tickets for the 2007 Green Wave season remain on sale through the Tulane Athletics Ticket Office. Tickets can be purchased in person, over the telephone at (504) 861-WAVE or via the internet at www.TulaneGreenWave.com.