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    OPINION | Could NOLA be more than four years of fun?

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Student newspaper serving Tulane University, Uptown New Orleans

The Tulane Hullabaloo

Student newspaper serving Tulane University, Uptown New Orleans

The Tulane Hullabaloo

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Tulane finds form, beating FAU 24-8

After the last few nail-biters, the Green Wave made a statement against Florida Atlantic University, shutting down any chance of the Owls winning. A loss for Tulane would have left the door open for Southern Methodist University or The University of Texas at San Antonio to play for the American Athletic Conference championship. FAU was 4-6 entering Saturday’s game, and winning would have them bowl-eligible for the first time since 2020

After scoring just 10 offensive points in the second half of last week’s win against University of Tulsa, the Tulane offense was poised to bounce back and started by moving the ball to the FAU 30-yard line. Tulane faced a fourth and 3 from the 30, but a strip sack gave FAU the ball with a great field position. 

Tulane’s defense only allowed 18 yards and forced a punt on FAU’s opening drive. With the stage set for the offense, Michael Pratt found Chris Brazzell II three times in a row for 64 total yards. Two plays later, Chris Carter secured a pass from Pratt in the end zone. The Green Wave went up 7-0. 

The FAU offense got going quickly, and a 30-yard play brought them into Tulane territory. The Green Wave defense locked in and forced a turnover on downs four plays later. 

Tulane’s offense continued right where they left off, with a nine-play, 58-yard touchdown drive that needed a fourth-down conversion to stay alive. Pratt found Brazzell in the end zone for Pratt’s second touchdown pass of the day. With Valentino Ambrosio’s kick splitting the uprights, the Green Wave was up 14-0 less than a minute into the second quarter. 

The Owls’ offense drove all the way to the Green Wave 2-yard line with a 19-play, nine-minute drive — but an incompletion on fourth down gave the ball back to Tulane still up by 14. With just under five minutes left in the half, the Green Wave attempted a sustained drive to take their lead into the half, but could not gain momentum after a 12-yard Makhi Hughes run. 

FAU got the ball back at their own 46 with under three minutes to play and tried to get points on the board before the half. A Kameron Hamilton sack on third and 5 eliminated any possibility of FAU scoring, and the Green Wave entered the locker room up 14-0. 

Coming out of the locker room, the Tulane defense forced a three-and-out, and an 18-yard return set the offense up just shy of midfield. After falling flat in the second half last week, the offense looked to turn things around with another score. Pratt led the team on an 11-play touchdown drive, which Pratt kept alive with a sneak on fourth and 1. Pratt eventually found Carter for his second touchdown of the game to put Tulane up 21-0. 

The defense kept their pace, forcing their second straight three-and-out while the offense got the ball back at their own 25. The offense continued to roll with an 11-play, 73-yard drive — highlighted by a 37-yard grab from Yulkeith Brown — but was ultimately forced to kick a field goal after stalling at the goal line. 

After three shutout quarters, the FAU offense converted a first down for the first time in the second half and built on the resulting momentum. A 15-play, six-minute touchdown drive plus a 2-point conversion cut Tulane’s lead to 16 with just under nine minutes left to play. FAU dialed up an onside kick, but the Tulane hands team was able to recover the ball in FAU territory. 

Although they ran three minutes off the clock, a missed Ambrosio field goal gave the Owls a chance to make it a 1-score game. The Green Wave defense pressured FAU to attempt a fourth-down conversion, due to a Keith Cooper Jr. sack on second that moved the FAU offense back 11 yards. DJ Douglas intercepted FAU quarterback Daniel Richardson on the fourth-down attempt, giving Tulane’s offense the ball in FAU territory. The FAU defense forced their first three-and-out of the day, but it was too little too late. The Green Wave forced a turnover of its own, stopping wide receiver LaJohntay Webster 1 yard shy of the sticks on fourth down, sealing the victory for the Green Wave. 

Pratt finished the day 21/28 with 252 yards and three touchdowns. On Pratt’s 37-yard bomb to Brown in the third quarter, Pratt broke another Tulane career passing record, passing Patrick Ramsey’s 9,205 for most passing yards in a career. Although Hughes did not extend his 100-yard rushing streak to seven games, he added 72 yards on the ground and also caught two passes for 9 yards. Brazzell II had a massive day, with seven catches for 103 yards and a touchdown. Junior tight end Carter had two touchdown catches on the day, which matched his career total up to that point

Jared Small led the way with eight tackles, but was followed by Tyler Grubbs and Kentrell Webb with seven and six respectively. Devean Deal, Jesus Machado, Douglas, Jarius Monroe, and Deal all had five tackles as well. Darius Hodges led the way with two sacks, while Grubbs, Cooper and Hamilton added one each. Along with his five tackles, Douglas forced the only Tulane turnover of the day with an interception in the dying minutes of the fourth quarter. The rushing defense continued to show out, allowing just 32 net yards on 30 rushing attempts. 

With their 49-21 victory over University of South Florida, UTSA stayed perfect in conference play, setting the stage for a meaningful matchup when they come to Yulman Stadium on Nov. 24, at 2:30 p.m.



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