Cleaning out the notepad from the University of Central Arkansas’ hiring of Steve Campbell as its new football coach:


Campbell served as an assistant for former coaches Pat Dye at Auburn and Jackie Sherrill at Mississippi State.

"The main thing that I learned from them was the importance of mental toughness," he said. "Both were Bear Bryant guys. In the fourth quarter, it’s who can reach down deep and be able to summon something extra. I learned how one play can make a difference.

"And I believe winning championships start at the line of scrimmage. You’ve got to run the football productively. And you have to have a quarterback who can give your playmakers a chance to make plays."


Although Brad Teague, UCA athletic director, was not at Delta State when Campbell coached there, he has landed another head coach with that connection (softball coach David Kuhn and basketball coach Sandra Rushing are the others).

"Delta State has a strong athletic tradition and just attracts good college coaches," Teague said. "It’s a good place to coach and have success. Like UCA, it’s a teachers school and it has a great network of teachers and coaches throughout Mississippi in high schools and colleges. The strong junior college programs in Mississippi also help that."


UCA’s conference opener next season? It’s Oct. 4 in Nacogdoches against Stephen F. Austin, which will be coached by former UCA coach Clint Conque.


The last team CAMPBELL, as head coach of Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College, was East Mississippi Junior College in the regional playoffs.

The first team he will game-plan for at UCA?

Texas Tech.

(Sports columnist David McCollum can be reached at 501-505-1235 or or follow him on twitter @dmaclcd)