SLU’s Larvadain, Kelley claim Louisiana weekly honors
After helping No. 14 Southeastern Louisiana University to a 58-48 Southland Conference victory at Nicholls, Lion freshman wide receiver/kick returner Gage Larvadain and senior quarterback Cole Kelley earned state player of the week honors from the Louisiana Sports Writers Association, the LSWA announced on Monday.
Larvadain was named the state’s Special Teams Player of the Week after receiving the same honor from the Southland Conference earlier in the day on Monday. Kelley, who was named the LSWA Offensive Player of the Week for the fourth time this season, has already been named Stats Perform FCS National Offensive Player of the Week, CFPA FCS National Performer of the Week and Southland Conference Offensive Player of the Week on Monday.
Saturday marked a breakout performance for the dynamic Larvadain in his first season with Southeastern. After Nicholls had trimmed a 17-point halftime deficit down to three late in the third quarter, Larvadain answered with a 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown – tied for the longest return in program history and SLU’s first kickoff return score since 2017.
Larvadain had played a part in the Lion building up the initial lead with a 76-yard touchdown reception late in the second quarter. The freshman is averaging 35.6 yards per kickoff return – good for second in FCS – and has caught six passes for 119 yards and a touchdown this season.
In the win over the Colonels, Kelley engineered an offense that finished with 573 total yards and 32 first downs on the way to its highest scoring output this fall. The reigning Walter Payton Award winner threw for a career-high five touchdowns, amassing 406 yards on 29-for-38 passing, while also leading SLU with 55 yards and two scores on the ground.
Gifted with a vast array of weapons at the skill positions and a consistently excellent offensive line, Kelley is building a season for the ages as the leader of the prolific Lion offense. Through five games, the Lafayette, Louisiana native leads FCS in completion percentage (74.5), points responsible for (152) and total offense (440.4 ypg), having thrown for 1,999 yards and 18 touchdowns, while also rushing for a team-high seven touchdowns.
His passing and rushing touchdown totals have already matched his totals from the spring, when he won the FCS version of the Heisman Trophy. On Saturday, Kelley, who has started 12 games as a Lion after playing 13 games as a reserve in 2019, broke the school’s career record with 72 touchdowns responsible for (46 passing, 24 rushing, two receiving).
No. 11 Southeastern will open its 2021 home schedule next Saturday, welcoming Houston Baptist for a 4 p.m. Homecoming contest in Strawberry Stadium. The game will be televised on ESPN+, while also being heard in the Hammond area on Kajun 107.1 FM, The Highway 104.7 FM and The Boss 103.7 FM/1400 AM, as well as online at www.kajun107.net. The first 300 students in attendance will receive a free t-shirt.
For ticket information, contact the Southeastern Athletics Ticket Office at (985) 549-5466 or visit www.LionSports.net. Southeastern will continue offering mobile ticketing as the primary source for securing tickets for the 2021-22 season. All tickets will be available via e-mail or text message in a PDF format for fans to download on their phone or print at home. Tickets can also be downloaded to Apple Wallet.
For more information on Southeastern Football, follow @LionUpFootball and @Coach_Scelfo on Twitter, like /SLUathletics on Facebook and subscribe to the SLUathletics YouTube channel.
TOUCHDOWN CLUB/S CLUB
Fans interested in becoming active supporters of the football program are encouraged to join the Touchdown Club. Lion football alums are encouraged to join the exclusive S Club, which is restricted to Southeastern athletic letter winners.
All membership fees and donations to both the Touchdown Club and S Club (football) are available for the exclusive use of the Southeastern football program. Membership information is available by contacting the Lion Athletics Association at firstname.lastname@example.org or (985) 549-5091 or visiting www.LionUp.com.
CLEAR BAG POLICY
Southeastern Athletics instituted a clear bag policy for all ticketed events, effective with the start of the 2018 football season. For more information on the clear bag policy, visit www.LionSports.net/clear.
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