2012 UTSA FOOTBALL
UTSA Football Timeline
Building a program “We are grateful to the Board of Regents for their support today to enhance our entire sports program and bring UTSA football to San Antonio.” - UTSA President Ricardo Romo Under the lights of Dub Farris Stadium, UTSA held its inaugural practice with 70 players – 28 scholarship and 42 walk-ons.
UTSA announces its inaugural schedule, which begins with Northeastern State on Sept. 3, 2011.
March 6 UTSA President Dr. Ricardo Romo and Athletics Director Lynn Hickey introduce Larry Coker as the program’s first head football coach.
Feb. 3 Roadrunners head coach Larry Coker announced the program’s inaugural signing class, which consisted of 25 prep student-athletes.
Dec. 18 The University of Texas System Board of Regents approved UTSA’s Athletics Initiative Business Plan, which granted permission to add a football program.
“The bottom line for me is that I really see great things and great potential here...I’ve coached junior high school, small high schools, large high schools and I’ve been at some very prestigious universities, but no place I’ve been at has shown more energy and enthusiasm than what I’ve seen here at UTSA” - Head Coach Larry Coker
2011 UTSA Football Game Day Program
March 15 The Roadrunners announced their first matchup with a FBS opponent as Baylor agreed to a three-game series, kicking off in 2017.
from scratch. “This is yet another historic day for UTSA. We have been working extremely hard for a very long time to reach our goal of joining an FBS conference and today’s invitiation is a realization of a lot of hard work by so many different people.” - UTSA Athletics Director Lynn Hickey
FOX Sports Southwest launched a new reality sports documentary series that chronicles the start of UTSA’s inaugural football season.
The Roadrunners hold the program’s first-ever spring practice.
UTSA kicks off its inaugural season by hosting Northeastern State at the Alamodome.
April 9 More than 4,000 fans were in attendance for the inaugural UTSA Football Fiesta Spring Game presented by Health Texas at the Alamodome.
UTSA accepted an invitation to join the Western Athletic Conference along with Denver and Texas State. The Roadrunners will join their new conference on July 1, 2012.
Just a week after its first practice, UTSA held its first-ever scrimmage at Dub Farris Stadium.
Eleven Roadrunners were honored in Phil Steele’s Preseason FCS Magazine. Five were named to the All-Independent Team, while six others were listed as Players to Watch in 2011.
The San Antonio City Council approved a contract allowing UTSA to play its home football games in the Alamodome during its first five seasons.
“The crowd was outstanding today. The players really enjoyed coming out in front of all those fans today and giving San Antonio a glimpse of what’s to come this fall. This was a great way to cap the spring season.” - Head Coach Larry Coker
2011 UTSA Football Game Day Program
Going all in … for just one season by Brian Hernandez, Associate Athletics Communications Director
ike Sanchez and Mark Waters are different in many ways, yet they share an important bond that will link them throughout UTSA’s inaugural season and, most likely, their brief Roadrunners career and the rest of their lives.
both have Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) experience, their teammates not only will lean on them for advice, but One is an offensive lineman, while the other calls the they definitely will defensive side of the line of scrimmage, specifically ask for and need free safety, home. guidance this fall.
One hails from Mission. The other is from El Paso, This meeting of the minds, so to speak, never would which is 750 miles northwest of the Rio Grande Val- have come to fruition had Sanchez not been looking ley. for a better opportunity two years ago, while a new coaching staff at New Mexico State was not electOne started his collegiate career in the Lone Star ing to honor a scholarship commitment Waters was State at the University of Houston. The other? Well, given prior to the 2008 season. he took his talents to the Land of Enchantment — New Mexico State to be exact — after his “I was looking around and wanted a difprep playing days were complete. ferent opportunity, a better opportunity, really,” Sanchez said. “Once I heard Despite all their differences, there is one, UTSA was starting a team, I all-important thing the two players have in hopped on it. I’m real gratecommon heading into this afternoon’s ful to be in this situation inaugural game against Northeastand can’t wait to help this ern State. program get going.” They hold the proud distinction of being UTSA’s lone seniors this fall. With that comes great responsibility, especially on a team that featured a total of 70 true and redshirt freshman, nine sophomores and a dozen juniors during fall camp. Leadership will be a key component of the Roadrunners’ first campaign, and since Sanchez a n d Wa t e r s 12
2011 UTSA Football Game Day Program
“I weighed my options and decided to come to UTSA after things didn’t work out at New Mexico State,” Waters said. “I think God puts you in the right place for the right reasons and I feel blessed to be in this spot.” Both players are expected to be key contributors for the Roadrunners this season.
Sanchez should see action at three positions along the offensive line (both guard spots and center), while Waters will start at free safety in defensive coordinator Neal Neathery’s 4-2-5 scheme. Head coach Larry Coker said the pair may have the most difficult job on his team this season because of their previous experience at the FBS level. “Mike and Mark have a lot on their shoulders this fall not only with their on-the-field responsibilities, but mainly because they are the only two upperclassmen on our roster,” Coker said. “We expect them to be leaders and teach the young guys the ropes since they’ve been around the block, so to speak.” Sanchez played for two seasons at Houston from 2008-09, where he helped lead the Cougars to consecutive appearances in the Armed Forces Bowl. That came on the heels of playing for his father, Fred, at Sharyland High School. Meanwhile, Waters saw action in eight games as a sophomore in 2008 after walking on as a freshman in Las Cruces. He was among the original group of walk-ons that joined UTSA in Spring 2010 and his hard work and dedication last fall earned him that elusive scholarship he was promised three years ago.
ful of people can cherish for the rest of their lives. “I’m so grateful for the opportunity that Coach Coker has given me,” Sanchez said. “I cannot describe the pride I will feel when I run out of that tunnel wearing a UTSA uniform on Sept. 3 because I’ve been waiting for this moment for two years. I’m going to give it my all and try to make all of Roadrunner nation proud.” “I will be one of the first two graduating seniors from this program,” Waters said. “UTSA is going to blow up and I’m going to be able to say that I helped start it. You hear people say, ‘If I just had one more year of football,’ and now I have that year. I’m going to make the best of it and I know I won’t have any regrets.” Once the ball goes in the air at 1 p.m. today, the butterflies and excitement will pass and both seniors know they will have to be focused on the task at hand. After all, they will have nearly 100 teammates counting on them.
If anything, the 2011 senior photo with Coker, Sanchez and Waters will make for a good laugh down the road because of its (lack of) size and the unintentional comedy it produces. Playing football in Texas can be a once-in-a-lifetime experience, but it’s not often that one can say they were part of something truly special. With the start of UTSA Football kicking off today, Sanchez and Waters know they will have memories that only a hand2011 UTSA Football Game Day Program