The Louisiana Ragin Cajuns return to the friendly confines of Cajun Field at Our Lady of Lourdes Stadium this Saturday night when they welcome Buffalo, a team that was projected to finish second in their division but has started the season 0-3.
The Cajuns are coming home after playing on the road the last two weekends, a 38-31 loss to Old Dominion and a 41-21 victory over UAB in a game where Ben Wooldridge suffered a significant lower-body injury, but you saw the emergence of Zeon Chriss and his ability to lead the offense. Now, Louisiana will get the opportunity to put on another impressive offensive display for their home fans.
Coming into this game, the Louisiana Ragin Cajuns are averaging nearly 37 points per game while the Bulls of Buffalo are around 27 points per game. Both offenses have done a nice job of producing through three games and both teams are generating over 300 total yards of offense a game. The Cajuns should have plenty of offensive fireworks with Chriss under center and the return of Dre’Lyn Washington at running back for Louisiana.
To add to that, Buffalo is currently giving up over 500 yards of offense a game, and considering the Cajuns are averaging 465 against their opponents so far, there should be plenty of offensive production for Michael Desormeaux’s group.
CAN BUFFALO ADAPT?
This might sound like a crazy aspect, but this is much different weather than Buffalo is used to or played in so far this season. Currently, in upstate New York, the average highs are in the 70s with less than 50% humidity. They’ve played at Wisconsin and then home against FCS Fordham and Liberty. So this will be the first game the Bulls will be playing in temperatures higher than 85°. Can this Buffalo team adjust to the heat and stay hydrated to prevent cramping and injuries? Certainly, something to watch tomorrow night.
DRE’LYN WASHINGTON RETURNS
Washington was raved about in the offseason as being the premiere back in this Louisiana offense for 2023. Then on his second offensive play of the season, Washington caught the edge and took off on a 62-yard touchdown run that was a catalyst for a 38-13 win over Northwestern State. Then, at the end of the game, it was announced that he had suffered a minor injury that would eventually keep him out the next two games. So after his 88-yard performance against the Demons, Washington is fully healthy and ready to return to his role in the Cajuns offense, along with Jacob Kibodi, Terrence Williams, Zylan Perry, and others.
Louisiana is currently second in the NCAA with 15 sacks on the season, including seven on the road against UAB. If the Cajuns can continue to put pressure on the Buffalo offense, that will set up the Louisiana offense to put up more production. This is the first-ever meeting between the Cajuns and the Bulls on a football field.
The Cajuns and Bulls will battle it out at Cajun Field Saturday night at 6:30 p.m. The game can be streamed on ESPN+.
Ben Wooldridge: 39-69, 508 yards, 5 TDs, 1INT
Jacob Kibodi: 26 carries, 211 yards, 1 TD
Peter Leblanc: 8 receptions, 120 yards, 1 TD
K.C. Ossai: 21 tackles, 2 TFL, 1 sack, 1 forced fumble
Kenneth Almendares: 4-4 FG (46), 13-13 XP
Cole Snyder: 79-122, 735 yards, 9 TDs, 2 INTs
Mike Washington Jr.: 36 carries, 146 yards, 2 TDs
Marlyn Johnson: 13 receptions, 144 yards, 3 TDs
Shaun Dolac: 21 tackles, 1.5 TFL, 1 INT
Alex McNulty: 1-4 FG (53), 10-10 XP