Louisiana Tech and coach Skip Holtz part after nine seasons

RUSTON  (AP) — Louisiana Tech and coach Skip Holtz are parting ways after nine seasons that included seven straight bowl appearances for the Bulldogs.

Athletic director Eric Woods announced Friday that Holtz would coach the Bulldogs’ final game against Rice on Saturday.

“Skip and I talked and agreed it was time for a change for both parties,” Wood said in a statement. “Louisiana Tech owes Skip a debt of gratitude for his loyalty and dedication to our football student-athletes, our university, and our community over the past decade.”

La. Tech is 3-8 heading into its season finale. The Bulldogs have not finished with a losing record since 2013, Holtz’s first year at the school. Holtz is 64-49 with Louisiana Tech, including 6-1 in bowl games.

“This is the right time for me to evaluate a new start in my career,” Holtz said in a statement. “The past two seasons have brought additional challenges to our program, and I simply think it is time for someone else to have the chance to lead this special group of young men.”

“I am not done coaching football and have great passion and energy to continue to lead young men through this game that I love so much,” Holtz added.

Louisiana Tech is a member of Conference USA, a league that was overhauled by realignment over the last five months. Tech was one of five current C-USA schools that are committed to the league beyond next season.

Nine current C-USA members have announced they are heading to new conferences, and the league announced last month it is adding Liberty, New Mexico State, Jacksonville State and Sam Houston State by 2023.

Sean McKeon had his first career touchdown, a 10-yard catch for the Cowboys’ first points. Elliott, who was limited to nine carries for 25 yards, had a 1-yard TD.

Kelvin Joseph of Dallas and Roderic Teamer of the Raiders were ejected after getting personal foul penalties at the end of a Las Vegas punt on the first possession of the second half. Field judge Tom Hill ended up with a small cut on his chin during the fracas on the Raiders’ sideline.

It was the second consecutive week the Cowboys had a run-in with the opponent during a punt. And the rookie Joseph ended up with the rest of the game off a week after staying home for personal reasons.

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