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Wednesday, October 2, 2019 7:53:12 AM

The Lions will be seasoned coming into this Lamar matchup, and they need a win here to set the Southland tone. SUM IT UP: Let's just go ahead and state the obvious here -- if there's a spoiler, a darkhorse candidate, an upstart just growling at the chance to jump into the upper echelon of the Southland Conference, it's this program. The Lions were perplexing last year. They also beat two dreaded in-state rivals Northwestern State and McNeese as well as an FCS Playoff team Lamarwhile also being blown out in other conference matchups. So what will we see this year?

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He was born a Rebel as his family has ties to Ole Miss that span three generations. During his 25 years as a player and coach at the collegiate level, Luke has risen through the ranks while learning from a number of successful veteran coaches.

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Luke, a four-year center for the Rebels , spent five seasons as the team's co-offensive coordinator and offensive line coach before being promoted to interim head coach for the season. During his first stop in Oxford , he served four seasons coaching the Ole Miss tight ends and offensive line under Cutcliffe.

Following his playing career, he served as a student assistant coach at Ole Miss in , helping the Rebels to an mark with regular-season wins against Auburn, South Carolina, LSU and Arkansas as well as a triumph over Oklahoma in the Independence Bowl.

That put him in second place for the most individual passing yards in a single game, some 40 yards behind record against ACU in He then added the fourth longest run from scrimmage in program history in the home opener, vs.

He graduated in May with a degree in business administration. His father, Tommy, was a defensive back at Ole Miss in the s while his brother, Tom, quarterbacked the Rebels from Tom is also on the Ole Miss football staff as assistant athletics director for player development.

The Lions finished with a overall record in their first season under Scelfo, posting a record in Southland Conference play.

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Scelfo's charges in his debut season included 10 All-Southland Conference players and one All-America selection. Scelfo came to Hammond with over 30 years of coaching experience.

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Scelfo took over the Southeastern program after spending the previous two seasons as the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at UTSA. In , his offense set 15 school records and helped the Roadrunners to their first-ever bowl game, the Gildan New Mexico Bowl. Prior to his time in San Antonio, Scelfo coached for three seasons with the NFL's Jacksonville Jaguars as an offensive assistant working with the quarterbacks.

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In his final season in Jacksonville, quarterback Blake Bortles threw for 4, yards and 35 touchdowns under Scelfo's tutelage. Scelfo was a four-year letterwinner on the baseball diamond at ULM from , earning the school's Athlete of the Year award as a senior.

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He earned his bachelor's degree from his alma mater in , before completing his graduate studies in The Lions' week two matchup vs.

In their win over JSU, the Lions jumped out to a lead and never looked back on the way to a convincing victory.

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SLU picked up its first win over a top 10 team since a victory over No. The Lions jumped on the visiting Gamecocks from the outset and sent the five-time defending Ohio Valley Conference champions to just its 13th loss since the start of the campaign.

SLU recorded six sacks and two interceptions in the victory. On the offensive side of the ball, quarterback Chason Virgil returned after he led the Southland with 3, passing yards as a junior and headed into his senior season with a wealth of receiving weapons at his disposal, led by All-Southland returners Juwan Petit-Frere and Bransen Schwebel, as well as veterans CJ Turner, Austin Mitchell and Lorenzo Nunez.

Senior defensive end Isaac Adeyemi-Berglund, who led SLU with 10 tackles for loss and six sacks as a junior, is one of two All-Southland returners on a young Lion defense, along with senior safety Xavier Lewis, who finished with 66 tackles.

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