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The Student News Site of University of Louisiana Monroe

The Hawkeye

The Student News Site of University of Louisiana Monroe

The Hawkeye

Vincent excited for 1st season with ULM

Beau Benoit
WE’RE ALL ULM: Head coach Bryant Vincent wants to replicate his success at UAB with ULM not only with the wins, but by uniting the community, university and city.


Question: Who has been the most influential person from your coaching tree?

Answer: Without a doubt, it’s Bill Clark. Bill Clark and I grew up in the high school ranks in the state of Alabama where we were both head coaches.

He was the head coach at Prattville High School while I was the head coach at Greenville High School and Spanish Fort. We went to South Alabama, and coach Clark was the defensive coordinator when I was the quarterback coach. I came in with him as his offensive coordinator in 2014, came back in 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021. Coach Clark retired, and then I was named the interim head coach in 2022. Bill Clark is not only a close personal friend, but he’s been an outstanding mentor to me at an early age in my coaching career.

Q: What were the challenges and successes you and your previous coaching staff found at UAB?

A: When we went into UAB in 2014, UAB had been to one bowl game in the history of the program, and that was the Hawaii Bowl in which they lost.

We went in there in 2014. They were 2-10 the year before they had been down and out. We were consistently losing. We came in in 2014, changed the mindset and the mentality. We got the city to rally around us. We went 6-6 year one and got bowl eligibility, and they shut the program down.

I came back in 2018. We went 11-3 and won the first conference championship in school history, the most wins in school history. We won the first bowl game, the Boca Bowl, in school history to in 2019 we won the west again. 

We won the west in 2020 and won the conference championship in 2020 up at Marshall. 

In 2021, we won nine games. We played BYU and beat BYU, who was ranked No. 13 at the time, in the Shreveport Bowl. Then I become the interim head coach in 2022, we go back to The Bahamas Bowl, and we beat Miami, Ohio.

It’s very similar to ULM. ULM’s been to one bowl game in school history in 2012 and didn’t win it. So it’s very similar—ULM and UAB. And the bones are here, you know, the potential’s here to do things that have never been done just like we did at UAB.  

Q: Is it more important to bring your previous coaches and staff or use what’s already here?

A: Well, I think there’s a little bit of a combination. It’s all about the right people, whether it’s the right coaches, or it’s the right players. There’s some really good players that are left on this roster when we got here in December. There’s some great players on this roster that are the right kind of kids from Drew Hutchinson to Car’lin Vigers to Travor Randle.

There’s multiple to Fisher to Mickle there. There’s a lot of really good players left that are built the right way and have the right mentality that we’re looking for. They’re the right kind of people, the right kind of players, right kind of coaches.

We’ve added a lot of guys that I trust and I have prior relationships with, whether I coached them or we coached together. So to me, it’s all about the people, whether it’s players or coaches. You have to have the right kind of people in this organization and in this program to accomplish what we’re trying and what we’re set out to accomplish.

Q: What has it been like to have only coached these players for a month?

A: Obviously, it’s different. There’s accountability on their locker. There’s accountability in going to study hall. There’s accountability in going to class and sitting in the front section of the class, and introducing yourself to the professor. There’s accountability on being on time in meetings and how we treat people. Respect is a big deal to me.

There’s winning and then there’s losing. Everything we do daily, we want to win. You can’t just show up in August and expect to win. You have to do it daily. 

So that’s who we become. And that’s something that our players and coaches hear me say a lot. “Who we are every day is who we will become.” Your wins in the fall start in January. 

Q: What are some of the small steps that you and the rest of the football team are taking to get to that larger goal of winning?

A: I really think it’s who we are every day. How we treat people is a big deal. How we affect this campus daily is a big deal.

How do we treat the workers in the caf? How do we treat the workers at our academic facility? How do we treat the normal students that we meet on campus? We’re all in this together. We’re all ULM.  And it’s a big deal that we treat people the right way. To me, you can’t be a great player until you become a great man.

And when you become a great man off the field, then everything we do bleeds onto the field. That is something that we will stand for daily.

Q: Are you a more offensive or defensive coach?

A: I’ve been a coordinator since I was 23 years old, so I’ve been calling offenses for a long time. But when I was a head coach at Greenville and Spanish Fort, you win playing great defense. You win being able to stop the run, being able to come up with big stops and big moments. And that’s something that we’ve been able to do for years. It’s something we put a focus on. Because when you can stop the run and you can run the ball, that’s how you have opportunity to win championships. And we’ve proven that.  

Q: Anything to look foward to this semester?

A: We’re just trying to win daily. If you keep stacking wins daily, then you’re setting yourself up for success. My goal is when we take the field against Jackson State game one, we’re going to be a tough, rugged, disciplined football team that plays for each other, that plays for this town and this university and, is going do it the right way.

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