For first-year head coach Michael Desormeaux, the lights shined bright on the podium at 2022 Sun Belt Media Days in New Orleans.
However, the former Cajuns QB and longtime assistant coach knew all the right things to say and took the challenge head on.
The message was simple: this team is built to win.
“It’s an expectation and a confidence that our guys know that they’re going to win,” said Desormeaux. “One of our themes this year is the difference is in the details, and I truly believe that. Those details have made the difference for us in a lot of these close games.”
However, there’s still many questions about this team.
For starters, the quarterback battle still hasn’t been decided, but Desormeaux is giving a deadline of August 22, which is the first day of school for the players.
Desormeaux is also dealing with offensive line depth, replacing four starters from a year ago.
He believes that his team plays with a edge, but he also hears the questions being thrown around.
“I think we have a culture of guys that like the work,” Desormeaux said. “We’re a chip-on-our-shoulder type of operation. The changes I think helped this team to refocus and develop a chip.”
”You do have people who are questioning a lot of things about our team and about our players. I tell them all the time, ‘We’ve got plenty to go out there and play at a high level.’ We just have to keep doing the work and go do it.”
Running back and leader Chris Smith shared the same sentiment on stage today.
“The past is the past,” Smith said. “Guess what, it’s a new season. Every day, we hear somebody going to decide the Ragin’ Cajuns lost this piece or they lost that piece, they’re going to fall off. I’ll tell you, we’re going to come out, compete and do our best each and every day.”
Louisiana begins its title defense on September 3rd inside Cajun Field against Southeastern Louisiana. The kickoff in this game is scheduled for 6:00 p.m.