No more wiggle room for Cajuns’ football
The Cajuns’ loss to South Alabama on Thursday night gives them very little wiggle room to get to six wins and become bowl eligible.
The Cajuns 4-5 overall record and 3-2 conference record puts them at 5th place in the Sun Belt Conference. Three teams in the Sun Belt are already bowl eligible and South Alabama is just one win away from joining the trio.
The Cajuns’ remaining opponents includes New Mexico State and Troy at home and Appalachian State on the road.
Last season, in their first year in the Sun Belt, Appalachian State traveled to Cajun Field and defeated the Cajuns 35-16. This season, Appalachian State is arguably more talented than in 2014 while the Cajuns have taken a step back. With this game being in North Carolina, the Cajuns will have a tough time pulling off the upset.
However, Louisiana-Lafayette should be pretty strong favorites against their two remaining home opponents.
New Mexico State snapped a 17-game losing streak two weeks ago against Idaho and followed that up with their second win of the season against Texas State.
The Aggies are giving up an average of just over 45 points per game and 542.7 yards per game. While the Cajuns have taken a step back on offense due to injuries across the offensive line, New Mexico State’s defense will be one of the weakest the Cajuns have played all season.
Troy, on the other hand, has started to look more impressive as the season went on. The Trojans almost went into North Carolina and upset Appalachian State and then produced a lopsided 37-point victory against Louisiana-Monroe.
Last week, though, Troy got pummeled by Georgia Southern 45-10.
At 3-7, Troy is 8th in the Sun Belt and as shown by their last three games, can show up as a much different team week-by-week.
It is highly likely for the Cajuns to go into the Troy game at 5-6, with a win against the Trojans being all that separates them from bowl eligibility.
The Cajuns at 4-5, have a very clear cut path to bowl eligibility. The main goal will be taking care of business at home against fairly weaker opponents.
Even if they get to six wins this season, the Cajuns aren’t guaranteed a spot in a bowl game.
The Sun Belt has four bowl tie-ins this year meaning only four teams are guaranteed bowl games. If the Cajuns reach six wins, and South Alabama is able to win one more game, there will be five bowl eligible Sun Belt teams.
At that point, it will be up to the administration of the bowl games to decide which teams they will invite.