The Huntsville Item, Huntsville, TX

Sports

December 23, 2006

Top 10 Sports Stories of 2006: Bomar becomes a Bearkat

Dismissed from Oklahoma, talented QB finds new home in Huntsville

This past season, the Sam Houston State football team was making headlines across the country, and it had nothing to do with what was happening on the field.

All the attention swirled around former Oklahoma quarterback Rhett Bomar and his decision to transfer to SHSU on Aug. 28 after being dismissed from the Sooners program because of an NCAA violation.

He and former Sooners teammate J.D. Quinn were dismissed from Oklahoma on Aug. 3 after a university investigation revealed both had received pay for hours not worked at a Norman, Okla., car dealership.

After looking around some, Bomar decided to go the Division I-AA route because he would have had to sit out a year on top of the suspension he received had he transferred to another I-A school.

“It was a tough decision. I considered everything — Division I, Division I-AA and things like that — but based on waiting for the NCAA to make a decision, I just wanted to play some football this year,” Bomar said the day he enrolled at SHSU.

Bomar considered transferring to several universities, including the University of Houston, Stephen F. Austin and North Texas, but in the end SHSU was the school that landed the nation’s top recruit in 2004.

Unfortunately for the Bearkats, Bomar never stepped on the field this fall because the NCAA suspended him for the season on Nov. 1. The NCAA reinstatement staff ruled that Bomar had to sit out a season, lose a year of eligibility and pay back thousands of dollars in improper pay as part of being reinstated.

“I am happy to get this behind me,” Bomar said in a prepared statement released by the SHSU athletics department. “I look forward to having the opportunity to represent Sam Houston State.

“Right now my top priority is seeing this team win some football games. This decision today will help take the focus off me and put the focus on the team.”

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    At the end of the Sam Houston State football team’s first preseason practice Monday at Bowers Stadium, new head coach K.C. Keeler told his players that they “did O.K.” There were dropped passes, missed assignments and errant throws from starters and backups alike. But there were also incredible displays of athleticism, as well as a sense of urgency from players hoping to win a starting job.
    The fate of Sam Houston’s season could rest on the arm of whoever emerges as the team’s starting quarterback. On Monday,  sophomore Don King III played with the first team, but sophomore Jared Johnson and redshirt freshman John Roderique each saw a comparable number of reps.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-28 Hill.jpg BEARKAT FOOTBALL— Road to redemption

    There were no footballs at the Sam Houston State football team’s first day of preseason camp. The team didn’t take the field, and the slew of questions facing the Bearkats this season remained unanswered.
    Regardless, after losing by a point to Southeastern Louisiana in last season’s FCS playoffs, senior running back Keshawn Hill seized Sunday’s series of team meetings as an opportunity to begin taking the Bearkats back to national prominence.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-28 Small.jpg BEARKAT FOOTBALL— Small named SHSU football operations coordinator

    Jonathan Small has joined the Sam Houston State University athletic staff as football operations coordinator for Bearkat head coach K.C. Keeler’s program.
    Small comes to Huntsville after heading up football operations for the Elon University Phoenix since May 2013 and the previous three seasons at The College of William and Mary.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-28-gerald-thomas-TD-catch.jpg BEARKATS FOOTBALL — Pondering the possibilities For 2014 season

    It’s been 232 days since the Sam Houston State football team fell in gut-wrenching fashion to Southeastern Louisiana in last season’s FCS playoffs. Since then, change has been constant.
    Willie Fritz is gone and K.C. Keeler is now attempting to lead the Bearkats to the playoffs for the fourth consecutive season. Sam Houston will need to replace 13 starters from last year’s squad, including record-setting running back Timothy Flanders and the program’s all-time winningest quarterback  Brian Bell.

    July 26, 2014 2 Photos

  • 12-08 hill long run.jpg Questions to be answered

    Uncertainty isn’t always a precursor to unmitigated disaster. The Sam Houston State football team will enter the 2014 season with a new coaching staff, new offensive and defensive schemes and a plethora of new faces competing for starting jobs that were vacated by players who helped lead the program to three consecutive playoff appearances.
    The schedule is daunting, but  it’s not out of the question for the Bearkats to go undefeated in conference play this fall. The roster is young and relatively inexperienced, but there are talented players on the depth chart who have not yet had an opportunity to showcase their skills. There are plenty of reasons to temper expectations for 2014, but also many reasons to hope the Bearkats can win the games they are supposed to win and find their way to the playoffs again.
     

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Rodeo: Brazile looking for another championship

    Trevor Brazile is attempting to earn a record 12th world all-around title on the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association circuit.
    In the Windham Weaponry High Performance PRCA World Standings, he currently is ranked No. 1 in the all-around race with regular-season earnings of $149,420, $46,345 ahead of his brother-in-law, Tuf Cooper.
    Brazile and Cooper are traveling partners. They hit the road together in late June while competing at the Reno Rodeo in Nevada, the PRCA’s first major summer event.

    July 25, 2014

  • 7-25-Gilbert-CP.jpg Justin Gilbert signs with Browns

    A few days before of the start of training camp, former Huntsville Hornet Justin Gilbert officially became a member of the Cleveland Browns on Wednesday when he signed his first NFL contract.

    Now that he’s got his contract with the Browns, he needs a starting job.

    July 24, 2014 2 Photos

  • 7-25-Derrick-ross-1.jpg Another record for Derrick Ross

    In his short career in the Arena Football League, Huntsville’s Derrick Ross has left his mark.

    Playing in his fourth season in the league and his third with the Philadelphia Soul, Ross notched another record.
    Along with being the all-time leading rusher, a mark he sat last year, Ross now also owns the record for most career rushing touchdowns after scoring three TDs on June 7.

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  • 7-24-Wade-int-return.jpg BEARKATS FOOTBALL — Kats have something to prove

    Bearkats running back Keshawn Hill has already won two Southland Conference championships, played in as many national championship games and made the playoffs in each of his three seasons at Sam Houston State.
    The team is still four days away from its first practice of 2014, but the Bearkats senior running back already has a chip on his shoulder. Despite the program’s recent success, Sam Houston State was picked to finish third in the Southland.

    July 23, 2014 2 Photos

  • 7-24-SLU-Bryan-Bennett.jpg Southland coaches have different takes on accepting transfer players

    Show Southeastern Louisiana head coach Ron Roberts the past and he says he’ll show you the future.
    Before Roberts took the reins at Southeastern, the program had only managed one winning season since it was restarted in 2003 after a 17-year hiatus. In just his second season at the helm, Roberts brought the Lions into the national spotlight by leading his team to an undefeated Southland Conference record and a playoff victory over Sam Houston State, a national runner-up the previous two seasons. The Lions finished the season ranked sixth in both The Sports Network and FCS Coaches final polls.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo