If it seems as if Louisiana-Monroe faces SEC teams a lot, your eyes aren’t deceiving you. The Warhawks have had 48 matchups with SEC squads, winning four of them, including a couple of memorable upsets.
When it isn’t facing independents or playing within its own Sun Belt Conference, Louisiana-Monroe has taken on the SEC more than any other school from another conference.
ULM is again on the SEC slate this week, coming to The Plains for a Saturday afternoon tilt with Auburn. It will be the Tigers’ 10th meeting with Louisiana-Monroe, with AU having won the nine previous matchups.
South Carolina and Vanderbilt are the only current SEC schools that haven’t faced the Warhawks yet. Here’s a school-by-school look at how ULM has fared against the SEC:
In 2007, Louisiana-Monroe beat the Crimson Tide, 21-14, in Tuscaloosa in one of the biggest upsets of the Nick Saban era. Bama finally returned the favor last year in a 34-0 home victory that featured 3 TD passes from Jacob Coker and just 94 total yards by the Warhawks.
Speaking of big upsets, who can forget ULM’s 34-31 overtime victory over the Razorbacks in Little Rock in 2012? Kolton Browning accounted for 481 yards of total offense and 4 TDs, including the game-winning scramble, as the Warhawks rallied from a 21-point deficit.
In addition to never losing to Louisiana-Monroe, the Tigers have the SEC’s largest margin of victory over ULM. In Auburn’s 73-7 win in 2003, Carnell Williams and Brandon Jacobs each ran for 2 TDs, and the Tigers set up three more with blocked punts.
The Gators haven’t faced the Warhawks since 2001. In that game, a 55-6 Florida victory, Rex Grossman completed 23-of-34 passes for 331 yards, 3 TDs and one interception.
The Bulldogs played ULM last season, winning 51-14. Their previous meeting came was so long ago that the team they were playing was still called Northeast Louisiana. In Georgia’s 70-6 victory in 1994, Eric Zeier completed 8-of-10 passes for 164 yards and 3 touchdowns. Five years later, Northeast Louisiana changed its name to Louisiana-Monroe.
In that aforementioned 1994 season, Northeast Louisiana finished 3-9. But one of those wins was a 21-14 victory at Kentucky. It followed its first triumph over an SEC team by beating North Texas, 38-20.
Say what you want about Les Miles, but he has never lost to Louisiana-Monroe, a claim that Saban can’t make. In fact, in the two games Miles coached against the Warhawks while he was with LSU, his Tigers won by a collective 82-0 score.
Here’s a name you don’t hear every day: Brock Olivo scored three first-half touchdowns and rushed for 222 yards on 38 carries as the Tigers beat visiting Northeast Louisiana, 31-22. It remains the teams’ only meeting, and it doesn’t count as one of the 48 matchups listed above since it was before Mizzou joined the SEC.
Ole Miss (3-0)
In two of the Rebels’ games against Louisiana-Monroe, they’ve scored 59 points. That includes that last time the teams met in 2008, when Ole Miss pitched a shutout.
Mississippi State (2-1)
A year after stunning Kentucky, Northeast Louisiana was at it again, beating the Bulldogs, 34-32, in Starkville. Quarterback Raymond Philyaw threw for 334 yards and 4 TDs as the Indians held on after Mississippi State missed a late field goal.
It’s been 16 years since the Volunteers took on Louisiana-Monroe. In that 70-3 victory, Casey Clausen threw 3 TD passes in his Tennessee debut, and Travis Henry and Travis Stephens added two scoring runs as the Vols reached the 70-point mark for the first time since a 73-0 win over Carson-Newman in 1929.
Texas A&M (3-0)
Even though the Aggies haven’t lost to the Warhawks, Kevin Sumlin’s team did get a scare two years ago. In his first career start for A&M, then-freshman Kyle Allen threw for 106 yards, a TD and a pick as the Aggies held on for a 21-16 win. The other meeting came in 1994. If you add Louisiana-Monroe’s two games against Missouri and Texas A&M before they joined the SEC, the school has played 50 games against current SEC schools.