MIAMI (CBSMiami) – The Florida International Panthers are struggling in 2012 and now must go on the road to face a University of Louisiana team more than ready to send FIU back to Miami with its proverbial tail between its legs.
FIU was hoping to build off last year’s solid campaign ended with another bowl game. But despite returning almost the entire defense, FIU has been a shell of its former self. The Panthers are 1-3 this season including losses to Duke and UCF.
However, FIU’s defense did show some signs of life last weekend in a seven-point loss to Louisville. The Cardinals were held to a season-low in yards by FIU and Louisville star quarterback Teddy Bridgewater threw two interceptions and two touchdowns.
Still, FIU has yet to put it all together in a game.
The Panthers are averaging just 27.5 points per game, which ranks them 71st in the country, according to cfbstats.com. FIU’s running attack is averaging 169.3 yards per game, good for 61st in the country and the passing offense is ranked 63rd averaging 227.3 yards through the air per game.
Defense, which was supposed to be the strength for FIU this season is where the problems sit through four games. FIU is ranked 110th in the country in scoring defense, giving up more than 36 points per game.
The run defense for the Panthers has held up pretty well giving up just 129 yards per game, according to cfbstats.com. But the passing defense has been abysmal, giving up 267 yards per game along with 13 touchdowns to just 5 interceptions.
FIU will be facing a Louisiana team averaging 33.7 points per game, yet is ranked 89th in total offense per game, gaining just 370 yards per game.
Louisiana had FIU’s number in Miami last season and will go for two straight over the Panthers this year in Lafayette.
The Ragin’ Cajuns and Panthers will kick off Saturday at 7 p.m. and can be seen on ESPN3.com.