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NOTICE: The views expressed in The Vermilion's opinion pieces do not necessarily reflect those of The Vermilion staff or of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.

The University of Louisiana at Lafayette is nationally ranked for football, and it is well deserved.

For the first time since Nov. 1, 1943, the Ragin’ Cajuns are a nationally ranked football team, coming in at No. 19 on the Associated Press Top 25 poll according to CBS Sports, and the Cajuns are ranked No. 25 on USA Today Amway Coaches poll.

The Cajuns defeated the No. 23 ranked Iowa Cyclones last Saturday afternoon by a score of 31-14 to help them shoot up the ranking. It was a decent outing by the Cajun offense. Quarterback Levi Lewis completed 13 of 21 passes for 154 yards and a touchdown. The running game also had a slow start to the season, as running back Trey Regas had only 49 yards and a touchdown. However, it was the kick and punt return unit that shined for the Cajuns returning a kick and a punt for touchdowns.

The defense also shined by shutting down the Cyclones’ pass offense and even intercepting one of them. Late in the fourth quarter, it was much of the same as the defense came through with huge stops on their way to a victory.

These numbers are to be somewhat expected this year as we are under weird circumstances. Most of these players did not know for certain they were going to even play this season so you can imagine where everyone’s mentality is.

Regardless of the numbers that were put up, the Cajuns managed a huge 17-point victory over the Cyclones. To be ranked in the top 20 is a huge deal for the school because, as I mentioned in my last article, the Cajuns are a good football team. The Big 10 has decided to start their season back up, but not before the country got a taste of what the Cajuns can do.

Watching the game Saturday I saw a lot of promise from this Cajuns football team.

Head Coach Billy Napier seems to have his team buying into whatever he is teaching out on the football field, and when a Coach gets players to buy in, magic happens.

Look at the Tennessee Titans in the NFL last season for example. Not the most talented team, not as many big names outside of Derrick Henry, and yet they managed to make it to the AFC championship game because they bought into what Head Coach Mike Vrabel was teaching.

This season, I believe we have the best Ragin’ Cajuns football team in a long time. Our next ranked opponent will be a team that has tormented the Cajuns the past couple of seasons in Appalachian State. They are currently ranked No. 24 in the nation, but we do not play them for another two weeks, so that is subject to change.

But, if we do manage to beat Appalachian State, the Cajuns could possibly shoot into the top 15 of the polls, which is borderline elite territory. Don’t look now because the Ragin’ Cajuns are on the come up.

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