Senior Spotlight: Eric Soza

On the eve of the beginning to the 2013 season, InsideRunnerSports chats with UTSA quarterback Eric Soza about his final season as a Roadrunner.

Once upon a time, UTSA quarterback Eric Soza was a Bobcat. Having redshirted at Texas State in 2009, Soza decided he needed a change. So in 2010, he transferred to UTSA.

"How many times are you able to start a program and who wouldn't want to play for Coach Coker," Soza said about his decision to come to UTSA.

Three years later, this now is the story of a relatively unknown student athlete, from a small town, who first went to a rival school, then came to San Antonio, and helped write history.

"They said that we're going to need people who are strong leaders, who are committed to starting this thing. I wanted to be able to see how good this team can really be," said Soza.

On and off the field, Soza has been Mr. Everything for UTSA and is the mostly easily recognized player in the program. As he is set to begin his final season as a Roadrunner, he is trying to keep things in perspective.

"It's pretty surreal," said Soza. "Everything is my last. It's kind of scary in a sense because you don't know what's going to happen after this season."

Soza is a very smart and analytical-thinking football player, but the idea of dealing with a final season is a difficult challenge.

"What are we going to do having that realization that this may be the last ever? I hate that idea," said Soza. "I love football. I've been playing ever since I was in first grade. I can honestly say I love it. I love the two-a-days, the work-outs, the film study, the off-season, I love that stuff. Talking to the other seniors, we look at it as having our backs against the wall. It's scary but it gives you a sense of urgency to bring out the best."

Up to this point in his career, Soza has been the best on the field. In 20 games, Soza has a 60% winning percentage, owns a handful of school records, and has been the single most important player on the field for UTSA. But more than that, Soza wants to be known as a leader.

"If they just remember me as a football player then I didn't do my job," said Soza. "I want to be remembered as not only a quarterback and the guy that made the first touchdown, but a great person. Not only from people from the outside but from my teammates. Everything I do, I try to leave that impression on everybody."

And that is the legacy that Eric Soza leaves behind: a leader of men who became the face of the program and whose self-sacrifice and willingness to lead helped shaped the foundation of an entire program.

"I want to leave our legacy as UTSA Roadrunners. The team's accomplishments are first. If we go and have a successful season then the individual goals will happen," said Soza.

On the field, UTSA, as a whole, has been overlooked by pundits and analysts. As UTSA faces stiffer competition in 2013, Soza and his teammates all have the same goal.

"I want us to shock people," said Soza. "Every game that we go into, we're going to have a good game plan and a good possibility that we can win. That's the attitude we have. At the end of the season I just want to have no regrets."

A native of Beeville, Soza is very close to his parents, who have attended a majority of his games as a Roadrunner.

"They're my rock. They've kept me level headed," said Soza. "My mom is the hard mom, she keeps me level. My dad is more analytical: keep your mind, keep your work ethic. They're the best parents that anybody can have. I'm blessed to have those type of parents. Everything that they've sacrificed, along with my brother and sister, I just have a great family."

In the air, Soza has amassed 4,233 yards with 34 passing touchdowns. On the ground, he's racked up 649 yards with 9 touchdowns.

As one of the original Roadrunners to take the field, Soza has already cemented himself as one of the all-time great Roadrunners.

Talk about Soza in the UTSAInsiders forum

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