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|Ridley shines against Tulane|
LSU sophomore running back Steven Ridley spent his anniversary doing the same thing he did one year ago.
Last November, as a true freshman, Ridley scored his first-ever collegiate touchdown against Tulane.
Ridley had five carries for 51 yards against the Green Wave, scoring on a 2-yard run with 1:18 remaining.
Saturday night in Baton Rouge, Ridley was lined up back in the backfield again against the Green Wave. With LSU leading 34-0, Ridley entered the ball game with 6:12 remaining and the Tigers on their own 2-yard line.
The former Trinity standout carried the ball eight atimes for 73 yards on the drive, finishing it off with a 10-yard TD run.
"That was exciting and awesome," Ridley said. "I got a few carries and made it work. I couldn't ask for any more than that. It was like being back home," Ridley said. "I was back in the end zone. It was awesome."
Ridley said he was summoned by LSU running backs coach Larry Porter with about nine minutes remaining in the game.
"Coach Porter called me down there to come by him," Ridley said. "He grabbed Keiland (Williams) and put him in there for one series. He told me to stay by him. With nine minutes left, he looked at me and told me I was going to play the rest of the game, he didn't care what happened,"
After a Green Wave punt, LSU took over at its 2-yard line and Ridley was met in the backfield by Tulane's Austen Jacks for a one-yard loss.
"We were working a new fullback," Ridley said. "Thomas Parson is a freshman who was moved from the offensive line to fullback. On the first play the linebacker came in free and hit me. Thomas came up to me and said, 'Ridley, that was on me, I missed him.' I said, 'Obviously. But no biggee, we'll pick it back up on the next play.' They gave it right back to me and Thomas and the line did a great job the rest of the series."
Ridley picked up 10 yards on his next carry and got the first down on third down with a 7-yard pick-up.
Following an incompletion, Ridley carried for 17 yards, followed by a 6-yard run.
Following a pass, Ridley carried for 11 yards and then 13 yards to the 10-yard line.
"After the game everyone said I looked like I was angry out there," Ridley said. "I just wanted to get in the end zone. I looked up at the clock and there were only two minutes left. I'm used to breaking runs in high schools. But it's a lot different in college. I just wanted to keep getting the ball and get into the end zone."
With 1:12 remaining, Ridley got the call on first-and-goal from the 10 and ran the ball into the end zone.
"I was excited and I am real happy for the second team offensive line," Ridley said. "I practice with those guys and when we first went out there I told them this was their opportunity, to make the most of it. They had some holes that were wide open. Big Greg Shaw, who plays behind Ciron Black, I told him this was his time and he was really opening up some holes. It was fun and I was just happy to get that opportunity."
LSU plays at Alabama Saturday in a 2:30 p.m. contest.
"That's the biggest game of the year for us," Ridley said. "We felt like we dropped the ball against Florida. We just have to come out with the same intensity we've shown the last couple of weeks."
Ridley has played in all eight games this season, carrying the ball eight times for 74 yards (9.1 average). He has six solo tackles and four assists on special teams.
Ridley, who saw action in both the backfield and on special teams as a freshman last season, rushing for 98 yards on 12 carries and recording 15 tackles on special teams, tore his right ACL on the second spring practice in March and missed the rest of spring.
"I give God the glory just to be able to play," Ridley said. "A lot of people have trouble coming back from such an injury, but I'm fortunate to have not lost any speed, to be 100 percent and not have missed any playing time during the season. I feel my best time as a running back is ahead of me. I'm looking forward to the final two years here. I feel I'm running downhill now. I just have to keep working hard. I'm very excited about the future."
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