Third quarter, Concordia is on offense and the ball is snapped. Their quarterback scans the field and finds a receiver on the left side.
He fires a strike, but sophomore defensive back Tyler Chapa sees it coming all the way. He picks off the ball and runs it all the way down the sideline to the end zone for a touchdown.
“The rush of emotions along with the adrenaline was unreal,” Chapa said.
“I never even had time to really think about what was happening until after the play. When I got back to the sideline, that’s when I asked myself ‘is this real, did that just happen?'”
Chapa had two tackles in the Concordia game and blocked a kick.
In Saturday’s game against rival McMurry Chapa had six tackles, including two huge hits that received a big reaction from both the home and visitor crowds.
“It’s not something that I look to get every time I step onto the field,” Chapa said.
“I am very competitive and sometimes big hits just happen. Obviously, you never look to hurt another guy out there, but it is pretty cool to hear the crowd after you make a big play.”
Chapa came to ACU from his hometown of San Antonio.
In high school he played on both sides of the ball.
He finished his senior year with 44 tackles, five broken up passes and six interceptions.
Chapa also played wide receiver and caught 23 passes for 407 yards and seven touchdowns.
He earned a first team selection from the San Antonio Express-News All-Area Team in 2011.
“I have always tried to play as hard as I can and always give everything I have,” Chapa said.
“Over the years, I’ve learned that the harder you push yourself and the tougher you play, the more success you’ll get.”
Chapa said he felt a deep connection with the other players on the team while visiting ACU.
“Everyone here made me feel like one of the boys and a part of the team,” Chapa said.
“After my visit I was pretty sure that ACU was where I wanted to end up.”
Chapa joins a strong defensive core that held Concordia to six points and 269 yards of offense.
They also held McMurry to 17 points and only 17 first downs, compared to ACU’s 31.
“Our job is to go out there and get the offense back on the field as quickly as we can,” Chapa said.
“We take our job very seriously and we look to challenge on every play.”