By ERIN BASS
Tulane and Tech will unite by the use of Joe Aillet Stadium Friday, Oct. 14, when the Green Wave will host its first football game on Tech’s campus. This will mark the first time in NCAA history that a college team has used another’s stadium for a home game.
After Hurricane Katrina kicked them out of Tad Gormley Stadium, it seemed as if the Tulane Green Wave football team was going to be out of a playing field and a school.
But where there’s a will, there’s a way, and both were provided by Tech.
On the afternoon of Sept. 13, Tulane football players, coaches and staff moved into Tech housing and the Thomas Assembly Center, which provides them with a weight room, locker room and staff offices.
The next place they will get to call home will be Joe Aillet Stadium Oct. 14 against the University of Texas-El Paso.
The Green Wave football season started with a 24-14 loss to Mississippi State Sept. 17 at Independence Stadium in Shreveport, but the tide changed and Tulane has won every game since.
They beat Southern Methodist University the following week 31-10 in Dallas, Texas, and then outplayed Southeastern University 28-21 at Tiger Stadium in Baton Rouge for a homecoming victory.
“I think that game was a combination of a very emotional weekend for our football team, and the one thing I was pleased with was that we came out with a victory,” head coach Chris Scelfo said.
“Our football team has been through a lot, and yet we were able to overcome it.”
Saturday, the Green Wave takes on Houston in Lafayette and it will be broadcast on College Sports Television beginning at 5 p.m.
“Houston is probably one of the best teams in our league,” Scelfo said. “They have a great football team both sides of the ball and capable of scoring in one play.”
“Defensively they take a lot of chances and cause a lot of havoc, and we are going to have to do a great job executing on offense and defensively we are going to have to do a great job of doing our assignments.”
Next Friday will be the first home game that the Green Wave football team will not have to travel, and Scelfo is looking forward to it.
“I think our kids are tired,” Scelfo said. “I’ve never driven five and a half hours home after a homecoming game, and that’s me, so I know the kids are tired.”
“We’re really excited about [next Friday’s game] and looking forward to it. This community has adopted us and hopefully they will adopt us that night and give us a true home field advantage.”
Scelfo said he was very appreciative of Tech’s support.
“Personally, this is what is right in the world,” Scelfo said. “Dr. Reneau, Jim King, Jim Oakes, Jack Bicknell and everyone in this community has absolutely welcomed us.”
On Oct. 13, Tulane will have a pep rally beginning at 5:30 p.m. in Centennial Plaza and following that will be an autograph signing by the Green Wave football team.
Next Friday’s kick-off is set for 7 p.m. and there will also be T-shirts given away at the game.
“I would like to extend an invitation to Tech and Grambling alike and make sure they get in free,” Scelfo said.
“I want to have that thing packed.”