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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Ragin’ Cajuns Hungry for Win Against Wildcats

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Will Ferguson
Will Ferguson / Arizona Daily Wildcat

It’s safe to assume that most players, coaches and fans on hand at Saturday’s game against Louisiana Lafayette won’t know the first thing about Ragin’ Cajun football.

But not Frank Scelfo.

Arizona’s quarterback coach and former Louisiana Tech coach grew up 18 miles from Louisiana Lafayette, where both of his parents graduated college.

Scelfo’s cousin played for the Ragin’ Cajuns and owns a restaurant right across the street from Cajun Field. The Abbeville, La., native went to games as a youngster and knows the university – and the cooking – like the back of his hand.

“I know the school, I know the people down there,” Scelfo said. “Whoever comes we’ll have great tailgate menus so you guys can go by there. Plenty of beer and gumbo I know that.”

Scelfo said he’s been getting an earful from his uncle about Louisiana Lafayette’s record – 8-3 – compared to Arizona’s. According to Scelfo the Cajuns are one win from guaranteeing a bowl berth, which isn’t helping his case.

“My uncle has been giving me some mess all summer about their record compared to our,” Scelfo said. “There will be some good-natured ragging this week.”

It would be easy for the Wildcats to go into cruise control after beating ASU to give their season some positivity. But with the Ragin’ Cajuns working toward a bowl to cap off an impressive season, Arizona has to be weary of an upset.

“They’re playing with a lot of confidence right now, you can see that,” Scelfo said. “They’ve got good players. Why it didn’t happen for them in the past I don’t know.”

The Cajuns of the Sun Belt Conference clearly don’t face the same level of talent as the Wildcats on a weekly basis. But they’ve taken care of the teams they do face and sit in third place in their conference.

They even played Oklahoma State close for 30 minutes after going down 34-10 in the first half of their season opener. Louisiana Lafayette is coming off of a 30-21 loss to 9-2 Arkansas State, but the Ragin’ Cajuns have proven their worth and impressed UA head coach Tim Kish with their offensive attack.

He called Cajuns tight end Ladarius Green “tremendous” and quarterback Blaine Gautier “strong and athletic.”

Gautier is second on the team in carries with 102, and Kish made it clear that Arizona needs to be on its Ps and Qs against the dual threat quarterback.

“They have a quarterback run game that they like there,” Kish said. “That causes problems because your numbers don’t always fit when you have a quarterback who can run the ball.”

So while Arizona’s season finale seems like a cakewalk, the Wildcats will be tested against a hungry Louisiana Lafayette team.

“They’ll be geared up to play,” Scelfo said.

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