University of Central Arkansas Athletic Director Vance Strange announced Tuesday that head football coach Clint Conque’s contract will be rolled over and extended through the 2008 season.
“This was a challenging season because of injuries,” Strange said, adding, “I felt that Coach Conque provided the leadership and pulled the Bears together for a strong finish.”
President Lu Hardin stated, “Clint Conque is an outstanding coach, and I am confident he will take us to a Gulf South championship in the next few years. We have a great deal of momentum going into the fall with the passing and overall leadership of Zak Clark, the strong ground game of Willie Hopson and Kentrel Rogers, and a roster of excellent student-athletes. I am excited about the fall of 2004.”
Conque, who will be starting his fifth season at UCA, said, “My family and I love the city of Conway and the University of Central Arkansas. This is certainly one of the premiere jobs in Division II, and I look forward to continue working with the fine young men that are part of this program,”
Conque has led the Bears to one NCAA playoff appearance, a Capital City Classic victory over Arkansas-Pine Bluff, and two consecutive Governor’s Classic wins over arch rival Arkansas Tech in addition to back-to-back top 25 finishes in 2001-2002.
This year’s team started with two straight wins before injuries all but decimated the Bears. A mid-season losing streak included setbacks to nationally-ranked Valdosta, North Alabama and Southern Arkansas. In all three games, the Bears had second-half leads. Late in the season, Conque changed the makeup of the Bears from pass-oriented to a strong running game, and they responded with three straight wins.