Five questions as Tulane opens spring football practice _lowres

Advocate file photo by A.J. SISCO -- Tulane cornerbacks Lorenzo Doss, left, and Parry Nickerson knock the ball away from Memphis receiver Adrian Henderson last season. Doss had 15 career interceptions when he declared for the NFL draft this spring. Nickerson had six picks last season and hopes to continue the tradition for the turnover-minded Green Wave.


If there were any doubt that the Superdome was less suitable for Tulane football than Yulman Stadium, it was erased Saturday. A picture-perfect day and a sellout homecoming crowd (which actually showed up for the most part) made a beautiful combination. Then the game began, and the Green Wave showed it is exactly the team we thought it was — too young at too many key positions to be a consistent winner this season. Whether this staff can get them over the hump next year is up for debate.


Turnovers. They’re killers. Tulane came into the game ranked seventh nationally in takeaways with 25 and 19th in turnover margin despite an interception-prone quarterback. But two pick-sixes by Tanner Lee, a pair of lost fumbles and a botched field goal attempt proved to be far too much against a team that was 13th nationally in scoring defense. In return, Tulane recovered two fumbles — neither of which led to scores. It’s not often you outgain a team 351-334 and still lose by 31.


If the victory at Houston a week ago was the high point of the season for Tulane, then this game will serve as the low one. It’s especially hurtful because it came in front a lot of people who will probably see only one Green Wave game in person this season. They could not have been impressed. Tulane has two games left against tough teams, at East Carolina and at home against Temple. It’s what the team accomplishes over the next three weeks that will set the tone for 2015.