With three games left on the schedule, Louisiana Tech Head Coach Derek Dooley headed into Baton Rouge with a very different looking group of starters.
It started at offensive line, where Tech had four juniors and a senior all coming back from last season. True Freshman Jordan Mills has been starting at left tackle for a coupke of weeks. Red-shirt freshmen Kevin Saia and Stephen Warner both got the start at guard against LSU. All-WAC tackle Rob McGill stayed with the first team, but moved to right tackle.
Wide receivers Cruz Williams and Lyle Fitte have seen significant playing time all year, as have freshmen running backs Tyronne Duplessis and D.J. Morrow. Red-shirt freshman Chandler Spence has also seen action at tight end. Second year freshman Colby Cameron has seen a lot of playing time in recent weeks.
On defense, C.J. Broades was on the scout team a month ago. The true freshman safety got his first start against #5 Boise and his next at #8 LSU. Other freshmen playing in the defensive backfield are Javantay Crowe, Chad Boyd, and Quin Giles. Giles played a little wide receiver against LSU.
Highly touted freshmen linebackers Kendrick James and Rufus Porter have not seen much action behind a very experienced Tech linebacking corp. Both James and Porter will figure into the team's plans next year. Red-shirt freshman Solomon Randle has played well as the second team middle linebacker.
Matt Nelson is a true freshman that has played really well at kicker. Cade Glascow has played most of the season at punter as a second year freshman. Lyle Fitte has been a big part of the return team.
Despite losing both games, Louisiana Tech has played well against two top-ten teams. The ten point home loss to Boise and the eight point road loss to LSU were two of the best games that the Bulldogs have played all year. With so many freshmen seeing the field and gaining valuable experience, the future looks very bright for Louisiana Tech.
The Bulldogs will look to get back to winning when they head to Fresno State next week. Tech is playing their best football and the wins will be there to show for the Bulldogs hard work.