LAFAYETTE — College football coaches don't often get asked about specific NFL games except for the occasional "did you see that?" or, "talk about a former player" question.
But Monday, Billy Napier was asked a serious question about learning from the Saints loss to the Falcons.
Sunday, New Orleans was shocked when a 1-7 Falcons team walked into their house, and beat them 26-9. The Saints were generally lethargic and sloppy from start to end. It looked as if the Saints counted on beating an Atlanta team who is on the cusp of a rebuild.
It's a similar set up for the Cajuns Saturday who head to South Alabama. The Cajuns are 7-2, have a few extra days to prepare for the worst team in the Sun Belt. The parallels to New Orleans, who was coming off a bye, are uncanny. But Billy Napier assured the media Monday they don't see the Jaguars as a bad team, just the opposite.
"The reality is, when you turn on the TV and watch South Alabama you don't see that record," Napier said. "You see an explosive skill player and one of the best backs in the conference. They're big, tall, and strong on the outside and can cause you issues if you devote too much to the run. Then defensively they're some of the more explosive front players in our conference."
South Alabama is 1-8, that lone win coming to FCS Jackson State. The defense is allowing 30-points-per-game, while the offense has mustered up just over 16. The Jags are being outscored on average by two touchdowns and all of that is leading to the Cajuns being favored by four-scores. The 28.5 point spread on the game is Louisiana's largest against an FBS team this season.
"To be honest, as a defense or team we don't look at that statistic," said senior linebacker Jacques Boudreaux. "We go into the game and prepare like we prepare for everyone else."