White rally towels blanketed the stands and exuberant shouts blasted throughout the field at Wildcat Stadium as the six-foot redshirt freshman threw his first touchdown pass on Anthony Field.
Luke Anthony, a sophomore accounting and finance major from Dallas, walked onto the field as quarterback with 3:04 left in the game.
“It was pretty cool that I got in,” Anthony said. “I wasn’t thinking that I was going to get in late in the game, so when I got in, I was surprised.”
13 minutes and 22 seconds into the fourth quarter, Anthony passed to sophomore wide receiver, Josh Fink, brining the Wildcats to a 24-3 lead over Houston Baptist.
Fink and Anthony lived together during their freshman year, and shared a mutual love of football. Although Anthony redshirted his freshman year, and Fink played on the traveling team, both agreed that connecting on a touchdown pass in the first game at home was an overwhelming experience.
“Catching that touchdown pass was an incredible feeling,” Fink said. “It was a perfect way to end that memorable night. It was even more meaningful coming from Luke, considering all the money, time, and effort his family spent on the stadium. Luke stepped up when his number was called.”
Anthony’s interest in football started when he was in third grade, although basketball dominated most of his childhood. Despite sports, he said ACU has always felt like home.
“With ACU being my parents alma mater, I grew up around this campus and knew that there was always a decent chance that God would lead me here,” Anthony said.
The new stadium, for Anthony and the rest of the team, has a home-like aura, specifically the Wildcat Walk. Anthony said none of the team knew what it was, but once they walked outside, they were shocked, and excited ACU students, faculty and alumni had so much pride in what ACU Football was doing.
“Looking across the field, and you actually see students instead of a big open side with nothing there. Its just nice to have your own place, to see purple and white, and people are actually there supporting, unlike what it was last year, so it was pretty awesome.”
Not only is Anthony dedicated to football, but his hard work is evident off the field. Maintaining a 4.0 GPA, he admitted to his lack of sleep over the past few nights, but wants to make sure, between taking tests and reviewing tapes, he continues to show a lot of commitment to football.
“When he sets his mind to something there’s no stopping him,” Fink said. “On top of that, he’s witty, a joy to be around, and down to earth. I love that dude. He’ll be a groomsmen for me.”
The Wildcats will play the Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks tonight at 6:30 p.m.
Foster Sawyer, the junior quarterback for Stephen F. Austin said he is looking forward to seeing and playing against Anthony this Saturday. Sawyer and Anthony both attended All Saints Episcopal, in Fort Worth for their high school education
“We are a family at All Saints, and our high school head coach will be there so looking forward to a family reunion,” Sawyer said via text message.”Of course it’ll be a fun rivalry but at the end of the day our Hs motto is Protect the family, and that’s what’s most important after that clock hits 00:00.”
Anthony said he looks forward to tonight’s game, and is excited to carry the momentum from last week’s win.