Under the lights of Wildcat Stadium, you will surely hear his name called many times while on offense, but redshirt sophomore quarterback Luke Anthony also has his name included on the Dean’s list regularly.
He received the honor of Southland Conference Football Student-Athlete of the Year after being voted on by a panel of each school’s head coach, sports information directors and an academic/compliance staff member.
Anthony said he’s thankful for those who guided along the way to earning the award.
“It’s really a testament to the teachers and coaches that we have here,” Anthony said. “They’ve set a good culture here and put a strong emphasis on being great in the classroom as well as on the field. Ultimately, my teammates have also helped me work harder.”
In his first full year as the starting quarterback, Anthony finished first in Southland in completions (319) and completion percentage (65.9). He was also second in passing yards (3019) and touchdowns (23).
These numbers were good enough to land Anthony a Southland honorable mention spot behind first-team quarterback junior Chase Fourcade for Nicholls and second-team quarterback freshman Jon Copeland for Incarnate Word.
Alongside Anthony’s achievement, four other Wildcats received all-academic team honors which led the Southland Conference next to Houston Baptist, Nicholls and Southeastern Louisiana’s three selections.
Head coach Adam Dorrel said he was happy for his quarterback and the four other all-academic players.
“I was proud of all our guys that made academic all-conference,” Dorrel said. “I’m very proud of Luke, that’s a prestigious award and I think it speaks to the type of year he had.”
Anthony has earned a perfect 4.0 GPA to this point in his academic career and has three more semesters left to see if he can keep it. He said this semester’s classes will bring a challenge to his straight A’s.
“This semester’s going to be my tough one, I’m in 15 hours and it’s all business classes because I’m past the stage of electives,” Anthony said. “I’m going to try my hardest though and it’s a good thing my hardest semester is this spring.”
With the football team’s season just over two months gone, offseason is in full swing for the 2019 team. Dorrel has been holding meetings and workouts with Anthony and the Wildcats since the end of the 2018 season.
The Fort Worth native said he feels confident for the upcoming season.
“I think we put some really good guys around us especially on the offensive side of the ball,” Anthony said. “We had a great early signing period and we’ve had a bunch of transfers hop in, so I think those guys are going to help elevate my game as well as our whole team.”
Anthony will enter the 2019 season for his second year as the full-time starter while Dorrel will experience his third year as head coach. Both are coming off a successful season finishing fourth in the conference at 6-5 overall and 5-4 in conference after being projected to end the year in seventh.
Dorrel said he’s pleased with how the team has geared themselves towards success this offseason.
“It’s gone really well so far even though we’re still in the early stages of the process,” Dorrel said. “We’ve outlined all our spring goals and so far so good. Our attitudes our great, the effort is good and the strength coach and I are pleased.”
Spring football, starting in late February, will be the first time Anthony and Dorrel take the field to start piecing things together and leading their team to the start of the 2019 season. Friday, April 5 is the official date for the team’s purple-white spring game.