Stay tuned to RadioAlabama Sports as Noah Gardner breaks down each of Auburn football’s 2019 opponents leading up to the season opener. Follow Noah on Twitter at @PointGuardner.
Game History: Tulane leads 17-14-6. The two teams’ last meeting was in 2006 when Auburn beat Tulane 38-13. Prior to the 2006 contest, the last game between the two schools was played in 1955.
Grading the Green Wave:
2018 Team Stats: 7-6 (5-3), beat Louisiana 41-24 in the Cure Bowl
RYPG: 218 (4.7 YPC)
SKS allowed: 35
TO DIFF: -1
RYPG allowed: 147 (3.9 YPC)
PYPG allowed: 259
Offensive Impact Player: RB Darius Bradwell (#10)
2018 stats: 1,134 YDS, 5.6 YPC, 11 TD
Darius Bradwell leads a deep backfield for the Green Wave. A 1,000-yard rusher, Bradwell is capable of bruising opposing defenders with his 230-pound frame. He scored in all but four games in 2018. He capped off Tulane’s season with 35 carries and 150 yards in the Cure Bowl. Tulane’s offense is built around the running game, so Bradwell is a focal point of the Green Wave offense.
Defensive Impact Player: DE/OLB Patrick Johnson (#34)
2018 stats: 49 TKL, 10.5 SKS, 16 TFL, 5 PBU, 4 FF, 1 FR
The wrecking ball of the Tulane defensive line, Patrick Johnson tore through offensive lines in 2018, accumulating 16 tackles for loss. He went seven-straight games with a sack, including three against USF. With four forced fumbles, he wreaks havoc among opposing offenses, and he will be a major concern for the Tigers.
Offensive Key Unit: Running backs
All four of the top rushers out of this unit return, giving Tulane a bundle of experience at running back. Bradwell leads the group, but the Green Wave had a 700-yard rusher in Texas Tech transfer Corey Dauphine. Tulane had more than twice as many rushing attempts as it did passing in 2018, so it helps to have this much depth at the position. The offensive line could help this unit to be more consistent as they had five games where they averaged less than four yards per carry, but there is a lot of potential for this group to have an explosive day.
Defensive Key Unit: Defensive line
Truly a Green Wave of pass rushers, good luck stopping the Tulane defensive line. With 41 total sacks last season, Tulane had multiple sacks in all but two games, including six with at least three. More than just a pass-rushing unit, opposing teams struggled to run against them, mustering 3.9 yards per carry. If you think it is because of the level of competition, think again because this group held Ohio State to four yards per carry and totaled three sacks against the Buckeyes. The group returns all of its starters, making it poised to do damage again in 2019.