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UIW's Morris named AFCA regional coach of the year

First-year coach led Cardinals to 2018 Southland Conference Championship

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SAN ANTONIO - – Fresh off orchestrating one of FCS football's biggest turnarounds, Incarnate Word Head Football Coach Eric Morris was named Regional Coach of the Year by the American Football Coaches Association. 

After the Cardinals went 1-10 in 2017, UIW hired Morris away from Kliff Kingsbury's staff at Texas Tech and charged him with turning the program into a winner. Morris directed a five-win improvement in 2018, guiding the Cardinals to a final record of 6-5. UIW won its first Southland Conference championship this season and advanced to the FCS playoffs for the first time since elevating to the FCS level in 2013. 

"I'm humbled and honored," Morris said. "I have a great staff, a supportive athletics director and just an amazing group of guys that made this season special."

The Cardinals' offense flew high in 2018, breaking nearly every statistical category and saw seven players players earn All-Southland Conference honors. Freshman quarterback John Copeland also earned conference freshman of the year honors. The Cardinals open the 2019 season Aug. 31 against UTSA.