Football back on the bayou


Kris Albert, [email protected]

Although the weather may not reflect it, it’s the start of spring, which means we get one step closer to the 2018-19 college football season. Teams around the country are highlighting their talent with spring games.

ULM put on their spring game Saturday afternoon, giving Warhawk fans a glimpse of what is to come for the upcoming season. 

While there was no score kept, the action was easy to follow.

Junior quarterback Caleb Evans splashed onto the scene last year passing for 2,878 yards and 17 touchdowns. Evans also managed 573 rushing yards and another 13 touchdowns.

Evans was able to lead two strong scoring drives for the first team offense during the scrimmage.

He threw two touchdowns to senior Marcus Green, who had a strong performance last season as well. With four touchdowns receiving and three on returns, Green looks to bring the same explosiveness to the team.

His scoring ability helped last year, and based on the spring game, that will not change next year.

RJ Turner also looked impressive on the scoring drives. He will pair with Green once again to give Evans two major weapons at receiver. However, redshirt freshman Zachari Jackson put the crowd on notice.

Jackson caught passes of 60 or more yards on the day, as well as catching two long touchdown passes. The receiving core improvement makes it easy to believe ULM’s offense will look to dominate next season.

Last year, only 10.5 of ULM’s 22 sacks came from the trenches. The group has been showing up throughout the spring so far and look to keep the momentum.

Changes were made with the group. Only junior defensive end Donald Louis started every game last year and will return to the team.

The secondary has talent, but continuity remains a major issue. Luke Hedrick and Nick Ingram were held out of the spring game with injuries.

Senior Collin Turner is also coming off a season-ending injury. Rhoy Williams and Marcus Hubbard return to their true position of cornerback for next season. Williams was also held out due to offseason shoulder surgery.

The first-team defense allowed 14 explosion plays in the first scrimmage, but that number was cut to three during the spring game.

Corner Corey Straughter returned an interception 30 yards for a touchdown. If the secondary can continue to get healthy, the only way to go is up.

The spring game offered the first glance at what the 2018-19 Warhawks will look like.

A strong offense looks even stronger as Caleb Evans gets another year to grow as a quarterback.

Having a dual threat like him makes the team dangerous.

If Evans can continue to lead an explosive offensive attack coupled with an opportunistic defense, the sky is the limit. 

The first game of the season will be a home game against in-state opponent Southeastern on Saturday, Sept. 1.

This will be the second time the Lions visit the Warhawks with ULM winning the first matchup 21-20.