One Eye on the Future: The Zach Conque Post
With a dire lack of the things to talk about, I decided now would be a good time to take a look at one of UTSA’s two known recruiting commitments. A 6’5, 200+ lb. quarterback from Little Rock Catholic HS (Ark.), Zach Conque looks to be the cornerstone of the Roadrunners’ future. Zach is the son of Central Arkansas coach Clint Conque who has led the Bears from a Division II non-factor to a strong competitor in the Southland Conference. It’s becoming obvious that Coach Bush values kids that were born and raised in the film room, as both he and Eric Soza are coaches’ sons. Zach’s football IQ shines through on the field with his uncanny ability to place the ball in the perfect spot, making life easy on his receivers. Although Conque’s frame causes him to be labeled as a pro-style QB, he is certainly a threat on the ground outside of the passing pocket with a reported 40 yd. dash of 4.6 seconds. He really is a carbon copy of Soza with about an extra half foot of height and a substantially better arm. That is enough to get me VERY excited for this young man’s arrival into Bush’s system.
I really love the above video because it gives us a great look at Zach’s footwork and mechanics. His throwing motion is incredibly smooth with a high release point that comes across his chest with zip. Not only are his passes incredibly accurate, he also throws with velocity, preventing interceptions and lofty tosses that are easy to defend. Conque keeps his throws compact by holding his elbows up high and tight above his shoulders, following through with his body weight after his release. What impresses me most is Zach’s footwork. On both his one and three step drop backs, he wastes no time backing away from the center with balance and rhythm. It’s encouraging to see Zach nail the ten and out pass after watching Soza struggle to complete those passes all year long.
In the latest YouTube video I could find, we can see Conque’s development from last year. His field vision is impeccable, finding open receivers on all sides of the field and checking down from covered primary receivers. Perhaps the most notable improvement is how much of a scrambling threat Conque has been this year. He really flashes his wheels throughout this video, picking up some huge gains on scampers. Zach does a great job of feeling out the pocket and avoiding pressure. It’s easy to see why he was such a highly-sought after prospect, drawing interest from TAMU and several SEC schools (edit: I guess TAMU counts as an SEC school too now, right?) as well as scholarship offers from UCA, MTSU, and Toledo. One thing that Zach could use some work on is improving the consistency of his delivery. During a couple of plays in these videos I noticed him lowering the slot of this throwing motion or throwing a tad side-armed. While such tendencies are permissible at the high school level, Zach will run into trouble if he maintains the habit in Division I play.
All in all, UTSA landed an absolute steal in Conque, and I can’t wait to see him throwing passes to Josiah Monroe and Kenny Harrison in ’14.
A UTSA alumnus that has been cast away to Austin, Jared enjoys live music and a craft beer. He thinks four verts is the best play in football but loves a QB sneak on fourth and inches. Twitter