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UL Lafayette Preview 2006 - Offense

CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Aug 8, 2006


UL Lafayette Ragin' Cajuns Preview 2006 - ULL Offense

What you need to know ... Expect more of the same from the nation's seventh best rushing team with running, running and more running. The passing attack will produce a bit more if QB Jerry Babb doesn't miss time like last year, but there won't be too much fun 'n' gun with Tyrell Fenroy leading a loaded backfield that gets to run behind Brandon Cox and one of the Sun Belt's best lines. The passing game is a question mark with the top two receivers gone from an attack that cranked out a mere three touchdown passes. Depth on the offensive line will be a concern early on.

Returning Leaders
Passing Jerry Babb,
74-119, 859 yds, 3 TD, 3 INT
Rushing: Tyrell Fenroy
179 carries, 1,053 yds, 12 TD
Receiving: Derrick Smith
22 catches, 250 yds, 2 TD

Star of the offense: Sophomore RB Tyrell Fenroy
Player that has to step up and become a star: Junior WR Jordan Jackson
Unsung star on the rise: Redshirt freshman RB Deon Wallace
Best pro prospect: Senior OT Brandon Cox
Top three all-star candidates: 1) Cox, 2) Fenroy, 3) QB Jerry Babb
Strength of the offense: Quarterback, running game
Weakness of the offense:
Wide receiver, offensive line depth

Quarterbacks
It's a fantastic situation with Jerry Babb returning for another season as the unquestioned leader of the team. He's able to do it all with an accurate arm and great running skills, and now he has to add more pizzazz to the passing game while cutting down on his interceptions. While Babb has Sun Belt Player of the Year potential, Michael Desormeaux is the one who'll keep defensive coordinators up at night because of his running skills. The team can win with either one under center.
The key to the unit: Being accurate is nice considering this is a running team, but Jerry Babb and Michael Desormeaux have to bomb away more after combining to throw a mere three touchdown passes last season.
Quarterback Rating: 6

Projected Starter
- Jerry Babb, Sr. - 74-119, 62%, 859 yds, 3 TD, 3 INT, 65 carries, 400 yds, 6.2 ypc, 4 TD
One of the most accurate passers in school history, Babb struggled through last season thanks to a shoulder injury suffered against UCF in the fourth game of the year. He's back and ready to be one of the Sun Belt's top all-around players with good size, a nice arm, and great rushing skills. He has 24 career interceptions to only 21 touchdown passes, but he has rushing for 1,130 yards and 13 scores over the last two seasons.

Top Backups
- Michael Desormeaux, Soph. - 62-117, 53%, 597 yds, 0 TD, 5 INT, 87 carries, 487 yds, 5.6 ypc, 3 TD
Thrown in the mix after Jerry Babb went down, Desormeaux was fantastic at running the ball highlighted by a 174-yard day in the 39-36 loss to Arkansas State. He didn't throw a touchdown pass, but he improved his passing becoming more accurate as he got more comfortable. He'll see time on special teams and will be used a bit as a change-of-lace quarterback behind Babb.

Running Backs
ULL finished with the nation's seventh best rushing attack thanks to the mobile quarterbacks, but the running backs also had some say in the matter with Tyrell Fenroy having a terrific freshman season. He leads a deep group of backs with several different options from the power of Chester Johnson, who's back from a shoulder injury, to the quickness of Josh Harrison and Abdule Levier. Deon Wallace was a top recruit a few years ago and will also play a big role. The fullback situation is solid with 240-pound Chancellor Roberson and true freshman Matt Desormeaux, brother of quarterback Michael, to pave the way.
The key to the unit: Keep Tyrell Fenroy fresh. That shouldn't be a problem with so many good backs, but it'll be tempting to keep feeding the number one back the ball.
Running Back Rating: 7.5

Projected Starters
- Tyrell Fenroy, Soph. - 179 carries, 1,053 yds, 5.9 ypc, 12 TD, 6 catches, 37 yds, 6.2 ypc
Fenroy became one of the Sun Belt's best players as a true freshman finishing up his season with four straight 100-yard games rushing for 569 yards and ten touchdowns during the span. He's a slashing back with a great burst once he gets in space. A proven workhorse, he should be in for another 1,000-yard season if he can stay healthy and if there's a little bit of a passing game to take the pressure off.

- Fullback Chester Johnson, Sr. - 2 carries, 1 yard
The leading rusher in 2003 is finally back after missing most of 2004 with a shoulder injury and then played four plays last year before having more shoulder problems. He's not a true fullback at 5-10 and 205 pounds, but he can be a powerful runner with nice hands as a receiver. He'll be a perfect complement to the speedy Tyrell Fenroy.

Top Backups
- Abdule Levier, Jr. - 46 carries, 213 yds, 4.6 ypc, 5 TD, 1 catch, 4 yards
The 200-pound junior showed some flashes last season with a 92-yard, two touchdown day against Northwestern State and 57 yards against Arkansas State. He's not the speed back Tyrell Fenroy is, but he can move.
- Josh Harrison, Jr. - 64 carries, 265 yds, 4.1 ypc, 4 TD, 1 catch, 16 yards
Harrison grew into a role over the second half of last year turning into a strong back in Sun Belt play. He'll line up at fullback, but not to block, and should be used as a quick change of pace. He's 5-7 and 175 pounds and can cut on a dime.
- Chancellor Roberson, Soph. - 1 carries, 3 yds, 1 catch, 2 yds
The team's one true fullback, Roberson is 240 pounds and can block. He didn't see too much time last season and will be used more and more in power situations.
- Deon Wallace, RFr.
The former high school superstar ended up redshirting last season and now will be a key part of the tailback rotation. He's a little bit bigger than Tyrell Fenroy with similar speed.

Receivers
UL Lafayette doesn't throw the ball all that often, and it won't be inclined to start chucking it around with this corps after losing top targets Bill Sampy and Kevin Robbins. 6-6 Jordan Jackson has all the skills to dominate, but he has to put it all together and finally come up with a breakout season. Derrick Smith is a nice number two type of target, but he might have to be the number one early on. Corey Fredrick is a nice backup, and Jason Chery shows promise after converting over from running back last season. Several young players will push for time including true freshmen Louis Lee and
Richie Falgout. The tight ends are fine, and now they need get the ball thrown their way a bit more.
The key to the unit: A number one target has to emerge early on and there most be some semblance of a deep threat now that Bill Sampy is gone.
Receiver Rating: 4

Projected Starters
- Derrick Smith, Soph. - 22 catches, 250 yds, 11.4 ypc, 2 TD
Smith is the leading returning receiver after catching a team-high two touchdown passes on his 22 catches. He's a decent deep threat 
 and a solid kickoff returner, and now he has to do more. He started off last season as one of the team's top targets over the first four games, and then he fell off the map with a mere four grabs over the final seven outings.

- Jason Chery, Soph. - 7 catches, 54 yds, 7.7 ypc
The former running back got his feet wet making a catch in seven games. However, he didn't do much of anything with his biggest grab a 16 yarder against Arkansas State. He has the quickness and the potential to be a dangerous playmaker when he gets the ball on the move, but he'll have to prove he can handle being a number two receiver.

- Tight end Erik Jones, Soph. - 4 catches, 46 yds, 11.5 ypc
He has the hands and the route running ability; now he needs to be used. The 6-4, 235-pound sophomore didn't get enough work last season making a grab here and there while turning into a decent blocker.

Top Backups
- Jordan Jackson, Jr. - 1 catch, 9 yds
A fantastic disappointment so far, Jackson hasn't been able take what he can do on the practice field and use it in a game. Even so, he's neck-and-neck with Derrick Smith for a starting spot. At 6-6 and 220 pounds, Jackson is a huge target who'll provide plenty of matchup problems on the outside.
- Corey Fredrick
, Sr. - 21 catches, 293 yds, 14 ypc
Fredrick had a big opening four games with 11 grabs, and tore up MTSU and Troy for 141 yards on eight catches, and did next to nothing else the rest of the way. He has decent size and nice hands.
- Tight end Kevin Belton, Sr. - 2 catches, 6 yds
The veteran is mostly a blocker and can make a few short-range catches. He's not the prospect Matt Ulm is and will have to fight hard for playing time.
- Tight end Matt Ulm, RFr.
Ulm will get every shot at winning the starting tight end job. At 6-4 and 245 pounds, he's the biggest option and has the hands to quickly grow into a top target.

Offensive Linemen
This should be the league's best line if JUCO transfer Junior Ramos turns into a force at center. The guards will be fine with Tim Falter and Will Chance ready to grow into stars, and Brandon Cox and Jesse Newman certain All-Sun Belt performers at tackle. This group will dominate in the ground game and will have nice stats in pass protection because the team doesn't throw all that much. The question is depth needing to get several inexperienced players meaningful time.
The key to the unit: Give up around nine sacks like last year and hope for Tim Falter, Junior Ramos and Will Chance to be rocks on the inside.
Offensive Line Rating: 5.5

Projected Starters
- OT Jesse Newman, Jr.
Newman got into better shape and should be even better on the move at 305 pounds. He earned second team All-Sun Belt honors last season growing into the role on the left side as a true sophomore. He didn't allow a sack all year.
- OG Tim Falter, Soph.
The 6-4, 310-pound sophomore saw a little bit of starting time as a freshman and now should be solid getting the job on the left side all to himself. He's a strong run blocker who should flourish next to Jesse Newman.
- C Junior Ramos, Jr.
The JUCO transfer comes over from Compton College in Los Angeles and will take over in the middle for Greg Hodges. He's a 6-3, 295-pound physical blocker who spent time early in his football career on the defensive line.
- OG Will Chance, Jr.
Chance had a decent first season in a part-time starting role splitting a job with Tim Falter. Now the 295-pound junior will take over on the right side full-time and should be great if he progresses like he did last year.
- OT Brandon Cox, Sr.
Cox finally lived up to his potential having a fantastic season at right guard. He's 6-7, 330 pounds and became a next-level caliber run blocker. His pass protection skills are still a question mark as he doesn't have the feet to handle the speed rushers, but he's dominant if he gets his hands on a defender.

Top Backups
- T Zach Leger, Jr.
One of the most experienced reserves, Leger is a decent-sized backup on the right side behind Brandon Cox. He won't see too much time with Cox tough to get off the field and will be groomed for the 2007 starting job.
- G
Lanier Coleman, Jr.
At 315 pounds, Coleman is the team's biggest guard and will push for time behind Will Chance on the right side. He's not as quick as Chance and doesn't have the same upside.

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