The day of the first game seemed far away; then it got closer and closer. Now there are just days separating the Roadrunners from their first game, and the clock in the football office continues to click down toward the first game in the history of the Roadrunner program.
“It has been a fun process; it has been a scary process as I look and it gets closer to the third,” Head Football Coach Larry Coker said. “It has been a great program.”
As the days got closer, Coker built a staff of coaches with varying experience and a team of players big and small that would take the field against Northeastern State in the first game.
“I feel great about the players but how good we do I don’t know that; we will find out: That’s why we need to play,” Coker said. “But we have good coaches, I’d take these coaches play.”
Having the Alamodome means one less thing for Coker to worry about leading up to the first game. Instead of having to worry about a venue to play, the Roadrunners are working on getting a practice facility built on campus.
“Facilities have been the biggest challenge. I thought recruiting would be but the facilities have been the biggest,” Coker said. “That’s something we are still working on, we own the land, now we just need to build the passer.”
The Roadrunners offense will utilize multiple looks to confuse defenses.
“We will run multiple formations and multiple personnel packages,” offensive coordinator Travis Bush said.
Leading the offense will either be redshirt sophomore Eric Soza or redshirt freshman John Simmons. The latest depth chart, as of August 28, had Soza as the starter, though both are prepared.
“It is special, Eric and I are roommates, I couldn’t ask for anyone better to push me,” Simmons said. “We are just excited, as a team, to get this started; we are ready to play some exciting.”
Nielsen contains his excitement by taking on a leadership role, being an example for his teammates to follow.
“Being one of the oldest on the team I try to be the leader as much as I can. We have a lot of young talent on this team,” Nielsen said. “So I like to make sure everyone keeps a level head. Everyone knows we have work to do coming individuals.”
The game on Sept. 3 will be played and the history of UTSA football will begin its on-field chapter.
“The more we come around, the more we feel more comfortable about playing here and the more anxious we get,” Smith said. “We are ready; we know we have a first game on Sept. of.”
Years of preparation are in the past, it is now time for the team to kick it off and begin the journey of UTSA football.
The Roadrunners will host the Northeastern State Riverhawks at 1 p.m. Saturday.