SOLON, Iowa - Connor Ham and his Solon Spartan mates believed they could do what many outsiders thought nearly impossible - end Regina's 56-game winning streak here Friday night. They turned their vision into a reality.
Ham pulled down a two-point conversion pass from Brandan Childs on the final play of Solon's 29-28 overtime victory against he Regals. The senior receiver raised the ball over his head and jumped into a pile of Spartans celebrating.
"All our high school career we were thinking Regina isn't all that special. We beat them our sophomore year, our freshmen year. They came back and beat us our junior year, 38-0 last year. This year we knew it was our time and we came out here and played and everything went right."
The 6-foot-2, 190-pound Ham played a key role on keeping Regina off balance. The defending state champion hurdler caught six passes for 61 yards and carried the ball four times for 51 more.
Ham did most of his damage on screen passes and sweeps. Solon did a good job of opening up the Regal defense with quick-hitting plays at the beginning of the game.
"We looked at their film and they didn't send a guy out in the flat so we could attack that early and if they sent someone over we could hit them up the middle and on the edges. Once they started creeping up on that we hit them deep with the post," Ham said.
Ham sits on the radar of several college programs. He visited Iowa for a few games last season and plans to go back to Kinnick Stadium again this fall.
"Some schools are recruiting me as a receiver, some DB, some athlete. We're trying to figure that out and see what my size ends up at," said Ham, who reports running a 4.50-second, 40-yard dash.
The Hawkeyes likely have around a half dozen scholarship offers to hand out in the 2015 Class. Ham is one of the players being evaluated.
"They're just going to be watching me throughout the season, seeing how well I do. It's kind of like right now we don't know where I am, whether it's a scholarship or walk-on. I'm trying to prove I deserve (a scholarship)," Ham said.
There's a chance Ham could end up at Iowa or elsewhere on a track scholarship and walk on to the football team. Texas receiver Emmanual Ogwo is going to be on a Hawkeye football scholarship but will run track.