Posted: Apr 19, 2013 10:21 PM by UL Sports Information
LAFAYETTE, La. - The rehearsels are all complete, the Ragin' Cajuns football team has been split up and both teams are ready for Saturday afternoon's Red vs. White spring game.
The game will be the final practice of the spring season for the Cajuns, who are coming off of back-to-back nine win seasons and New Orleans Bowl titles.
During Friday afternoon's practice, the 14th of 15 spring practices and the final session before the spring game, the Cajuns did their final prep for the spring game.
The squad was split in two for the second half of the practice, with one team practicing outside and the other in the Moncla Indoor facility. The time allowed the teams to install some special plays and formations for the spring game.
Head coach Mark Hudspeth, who is coaching neither team on Saturday, was thrilled with the practice.
"Our guys brought the spirit and energy today," Hudspeth said. "They were excited about being getting ready to compete against each other in front of a large crowd and it showed in their effort."
With the end of spring practice less than 24 hours away, Hudspeth outlined what he expected on Saturday.
"I want our guys to go out on the field and do all of the things that we worked on the last five weeks. Our hard work needs to carry over to the spring game so I expect them to practice their fundamentals, work hard and I would like to see our playmakers, especially our young playmakers, step up," Hudspeth added.
Hudspeth has taken a different approach towards dividing the team into the two units this year. Last year, the players had a draft to set the teams. This year, Hudspeth has stocked the Red team with the majority of the first team offense while most of the first team defense is on the White squad.
To finish off the teams, the White squad features the second team offense while the second team defense is on the Red team.
Terrance Broadway, the MVP of the New Orleans Bowl last season, will quarterback the Red team and will wear the blue jersey on Saturday as the only player on the field who can't be hit by the defense.
Redshirt freshman D'Shaie Landor will backup Broadway on the Red team while both Brooks Haack and Jalen Nixon will quarterback the White squad.
Hudspeth noted following the practice that Nixon will take on an additional role. Besides seeing time as the backup quarterback, he will also take reps in the back field.
"Injuries have limited our depth in the backfield for Saturday so we are going to go ahead and let Jalen take some snaps at running back," Hudspeth said.
"This is something we thought about more and more as spring practice progressed. When it looked like Jalen was going to be our fourth string quarterback, we talked about other ways to get an athlete with his talent on the field so we thought we'd try him in the backfield. He's 6-2, 230 pounds and I can only imagine the kind of one-two punch we'd have with him and Alonzo Harris (6-1, 22) running," Hudspeth said.
Hudspeth reminded fans to get to campus early on Saturday and use the north end of the Cajun Field parking lot.
"Come early and tailgate and then enjoy the game," Hudspeth said. "After the game we'd like our fans to come on down on the field for autographs and pictures.
"Saturday should be a great day," Hudspeth added.