|Radney signs with Austin College|
|Bobby "Butch" Burney | News-Telegram Sports Editor|
May 4, 2005 - Sulphur Springs senior Patrick Radney will be taking his brains and his athletic ability to Austin College next year after signing a letter of intent to play football for the academically elite university in Sherman.
Radney, an Academic All-State honorable mention selection and a First Team All-District 12-4A defensive end, will likely play outside linebacker for the Division III Kangaroos, who play in the American Southwest Conference. Division III schools can't give athletic scholarships, but they help students with academic grants and scholarships.
SSHS head coach Brad Turner said Radney should fit in well with the team as well as be able to fulfill the academic requirements.
"It helps when you're as smart as he is on top of being a good player. Part of the reason he's good in the classroom is because of his work ethic. The same amount of time he spent being a good athlete he also spent in the classroom," Turner said. "Austin College is a great institution, and he'll come out of there with a valuable degree. I also think he'll be able to step in there and help their football program."
On the field, Radney moved from outside linebacker to defensive end his senior year despite being undersized at 5-11, 175 pounds. Nevertheless, he finished with 70 tackles, 13 tackles for losses and a team-high eight quarterback sacks.
"He's probably as unselfish of a kid as I've been around," Turner said. "He was all about making our team better. He changed positions going into his senior year, and was really unsure of how it was going to pan out. He did it with a happy heart and a good spirit.
"Then, he made All-District and is going to go to college and play. Good things happen to good people, and Patrick Radney is a good person."
Radney visited the campus twice, and decided on the college after figuring he could get into a five-year master's degree plan and become a coach. He was also excited about the prospect of being able to play his first or second year.
"They graduated all of their starting linebackers. I will play outside linebacker and drop-down safety position," he explained. "They said I could probably play within my freshman or sophomore year. I should get some playing time my freshman year, which was a big draw."
He became the sixth Wildcat this year to sign a college letter of intent to play football and the 11th overall to commit to play a collegiate sport.