UAB upsets BYU winning Independence Bowl, tops off historic year

UAB versus FAU. Photo via Jacob Blankenship for Bham Now.

UAB did it again. Perhaps the most underestimated football team in the nation, this evening our Blazers defeated No. 13 BYU  in the Radiance Technologies Independence Bowl in Shreveport, Louisiana.

UAB Football Renaissance

UAB Football
Photo via UAB Athletic Facebook page

Only five short years since the program’s resurrection in 2017, the Blazers 31-28 victory over the storied BYU program marks the team’s 3rd 9+ win season out of the past 4 seasons.

Other notable facts after today’s bowl victory:

  • Highest ranked win in UAB Football history
  • Second bowl win in program history

UAB Quarterback Dylan Hopkins set an Independence Bowl record for completion percentage while also completing his first 12 passes to start the game. Sophomore sensation DeWayne McBride ran for 183 yards and a touchdown, finishing his sophomore campaign with 1,371 rushing yards – the third most in a single season at UAB.

Missed the game? Here are the highlights from ESPN

What a Season

UAB Football
UAB at Protective Stadium. Photo via Jacob Blankenship for Bham Now.

UAB is now 43-20 overall since returning to action in 2017 and has captured two Conference USA Championships and two bowl victories.

UAB Football
UAB entering Protective Stadium. Photo via Jacob Blankenship for Bham Now.

2021 is a year to remember for the UAB Blazers. The football program played their first season at Protective Stadium, they moved to the American Athletic Conference in late October and now they are Independence Bowl winners. With Hopkins, McBride and a stout defense coming back in 2022, we should expect more trophies to make its way to the Southside.

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Pat Byington
Longtime conservationist. Former Executive Director at the Alabama Environmental Council and Wild South. Publisher of the Bama Environmental News for more than 18 years. Career highlights include playing an active role in the creation of Alabama's Forever Wild program, Little River Canyon National Preserve, Dugger Mountain Wilderness, preservation of special places throughout the East through the Wilderness Society and the strengthening (making more stringent) the state of Alabama's cancer risk and mercury standards.
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