Louisiana-Lafayette senior forward Shawn Long seemed to like playing in Georgia.
The 6-foot-11 senior turned in monster performances in back-to-back games at Georgia Southern and Georgia State, posting 23 points and 17 rebounds against the Eagles, then 23 points and 18 rebounds against the Panthers.
Those big outings pushed Long closer to some more career milestones. He already has become the career leading rebounder for the Ragin’ Cajuns and the Sun Belt Conference this season, but he’s closing in on some other impressive accomplishments.
He is now 13 points shy of becoming the sixth player in both Cajuns and Sun Belt history to crack 2,000 career points. None of the Cajuns’ previous 2,000-point scorers did so while the school was an SBC member.
On this upcoming five-game homestand, which starts Thursday against South Alabama, Long likely will ascend to No. 5 on the school’s all-time scoring list; he needs 72 points to pass Jerry Flake.
He would need a sequence of games like he played against Georgia State and Georgia Southern, when he made 10 and nine shots, but it’s possible Long moves into the top five in school history in field goals made during the homestand as well. He’s 52 behind Flake for No. 5.
Long also will likely pass former teammate Elfrid Payton in the next game or two for free throws made. He trails Payton by six for eighth place in school history. The last game of the homestand should put Long in a tie for first place with Graylin Warner for career starts.
Entering Sunday, Long ranked No. 46 nationally in scoring (19.1) and No. 3 in rebounding (13.0).
Chasing No. 100
Speaking of milestones, coach Bob Marlin posted his 95th victory as Cajuns coach Saturday against Georgia State.
If the Cajuns sweep the homestand, Marlin would earn his 100th win as Cajuns coach against Louisiana-Monroe on Feb. 2.
A big reason behind the lopsided 87-54 final score against Georgia State on Saturday was the Cajuns’ ability to take care of the ball.
They committed just five turnovers, including just one during a dominant second half.
It was far and away their best game of the season, and it was the team’s best effort in the turnover department since their four-turnover game against Creighton in the 2014 NCAA tournament.