Most football players won't win a championship on any level of play. Clint Conque's UCA Bears have now won two Southland Conference titles in 4 years.
UCA has a roster full of players who were told during their high school days that they weren't big enough or fast enough to play on the FBS level. Many arrive with a chip on their shoulder. Clint Conque says that can be a good thing. He likes to say that's why many of his Bears play" on the edge".
If I had to pick a poster boy for UCA's successful run in Division One, it would be Seth Allison.
Seth Allison was a star quarterback/linebacker at Stuttgart high. UCA was the only Divison One school to offer Seth. It wasn't a scholarship offer. UCA offered Allison a chance to earn a scholarship. It's highly unlikely that this three year starter at linebacker will graduate to the NFL, but Seth will leave Conway with two championship rings and a Masters degree.
In my time calling UCA games on the radio ( 5 seasons), three things stick out. Great quarterback play, big plays and heart stopping finishes.
Clint Conque can coach quarterbacks. Conque will tell you that his offenses go through the quarterback, and that's probably what makes them so much fun to watch. I've had the pleasure of watching Nathan Brown , Nathan Dick and Wynrick Smothers lead the Bears. I've never called a game for UCA where I thought the Bears didn't have the edge at the quarterback position.
UCA clinched it's latest conference title the "Clint Conque " way, big plays triggered by it's quarterback. Wynrick Smothers ran 57 yards for a touchdown, and threw 4 touchdown passes. Five big highlights !!!
Some would say that UCA should have lost two more conference games. Back on September 22, on the stripes, third ranked Sam Houston State had the Bears down 20-10 with under 4 minutes to go. With 3:18 to go, Smothers sliced through the Cowboy defense, a 17 yard touchdown run to make it a 20-17 game. UCA got the ball back with just over 2 minutes to go, on it's own 23. It took Smothers only five plays to lead the Bears to an unlikley upset win. The game winning play was a 26 yard pass from Smothers to his roommate , Dominique Croom.
Where's there's life, there's hope.
October 13 at McNeese St. The Cowboys rip off a 26 yard touchdown run with 3:18 to go to build a 9 point lead. Wynrick Smothers engineered a 13 play, 72 yard drive to bring the Bears within two with just over a minute to play. Clint Conque called on a true freshman from Bryant , Jace Denker, to attempt the onside kick. The ball bounced UCA's way, and three plays later, Eddie Camara drilled his longest field goal as a Bear, 47 yards, to give UCA a 27-26 win.
I have a feeling I'll get to witness more big plays and possibly one or two more heart stopping finishes this season. The Bears will close the regular season a week from Saturday in Conway agaiinst Eastern Illinois, then it's on to the playoffs. UCA is one of only 20 teams that will take part in the FCS playoffs.
It's been a fun season on the stripes.
Home News Weather Sports Video About Us Newslinks Community Follow Us Fun and Games Blogs KATV/FCC Public File
Employment Contact KATV Credit Application and Advertising Terms and Conditions KATV Programming EEO Report