8:00 PM ET, October 17, 2003
Papa John's Cardinal Stadium, Louisville, KY
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) -- Eric Shelton rushed for 128 yards and scored three touchdowns for the second straight game as Louisville beat Tulane 47-28 on Friday night.
Michael Bush had two touchdown runs and Kerry Rhodes had two interceptions, returning the second one 33 yards for a score as Louisville (6-1, 2-1 Conference USA) continued its best start since 2001.
Mewelde Moore, Conference USA's career leader in yards rushing, ran for 123 yards and a touchdown and had 57 receiving yards for Tulane (3-4, 1-3). Moore's 180 all-purpose yards pushed him over 6,000 for his career. Moore also became the second player in Division I-A history to go over 4,000 yards rushing and 2,000 yards receiving, joining Stanford's Darrin Nelson.
The Cardinals piled up 500 yards against the nation's most porous defense.
Stefan LeFors got the Cardinals rolling on their second possession with a 43-yard pass to J.R. Russell five minutes into the game. Shelton finished the drive with an eight-yard touchdown run with 8:05 left in the opening quarter.
Shelton, a Florida State transfer, rushed for 70 yards and three touchdowns in the Cardinals' 34-10 win over Army last week.
He had a 36-yard run, his longest of the season, to set up Bush's 14-yard TD run on the first play of the second quarter.
On Tulane's next possession, Moore fumbled a pitch from quarterback J.P. Losman, giving the Cardinals the ball at the Green Wave's 28.
Shelton had an 11-yard touchdown run two minutes later. He had 106 rushing yards in the first half against Tulane's 113th-ranked rush defense.
Losman, tied for third in the nation with 19 touchdown passes coming into the game, made up for an early interception with a 16-yard touchdown strike to Carl Davis midway through the second quarter.
The Cardinals answered with an 11-play drive that chewed up almost five minutes. Nate Smith set a school record with his 37th career field goal, a 29-yarder, to give the Cardinals a 24-7 lead with 1:10 left before halftime.
The Green Wave, averaging 411 yards per game, had only 130 yards in the first half.
Tulane's Tristan Smith fumbled at the Green Wave's 15 on the second play of the second half and Nate Smith tacked on another 29-yard field goal 2:10 after halftime.
Losman threw a 27-yard pass to Roydell Williams with 5:43 left in the third quarter. Williams finished with 119 receiving yards.
Shelton had a 14-yard touchdown run early in the fourth quarter.
On Tulane's next play from scrimmage, Chris Bush tipped a pass to Rhodes who made an acrobatic one-handed grab at the 33-yard line. He weaved his way to the end zone and scored just 17 seconds after Shelton's last TD.
Tulane never threatened again, although Losman threw a late touchdown pass to Bubba Terranova. Losman completed 16 of 29 passes for 243 yards and had at least three touchdown passes for the fifth time this season.