The Hendrix bookstore used to sell T-shirts proclaiming that the Warriors’ football team has been undefeated since 1961.
Now four local athletes will try to continue that trend.
Hendrix, a division-III school in Conway, is bringing back football this fall for the first time in 52 years and signed four local athletes.
Northside’s Gray Stanton, Southside’s Jake Falleur, Bentonville’s John Donald and Alma’s Harrison Newton will all suit for for the Warriors this fall.
“I feel honored I can further my football career,” Newton said. “It’s been a dream of mine since I was a little kid. I’ve worked for it my whole life and I’m privileged to go to a school like Hendrix.”
Academics will be priority number one at the school but a special bond will be made immediately with this signing class.
“The coaches are saying this is going to be a special time for all the freshman that are coming in,” Falleur said. “A special class because we are all going to have a friendship and a brotherhood for the rest of our lives.”
“They are starting a program and it’s going to be fun, challenging but the coaching staff is excited,” Donald said. “They want kids like me with high academics and can be smart on the field and try to be good in the class room.”
Buck Buchanan will guide Hendrix in its first season in more than five decades and he knew the importance of this part of the state when he started the recruiting process.
“We want to make sure we keep the best and brightest students in state,” Buchanan said. “Northwest Arkansas obviously has a lot of great students and a lot of great athletes, a lot of great programs and that is obviously a priority for us.”
Northside’s Stanton played quarterback during his senior year but will make the switch to linebacker, a position he played his first two seasons with the Grizzlies.
“It’s just starting a new tradition, new team,” Stanton said. “It is going to be like coming to Northside. We are going to have a lot of new guys. A really small team. I just want to be somebody, lead a team to do something great.”
Hendrix will unveil its new stadium and its new roster when they host Westminster (Mo.) on Sept. 7.