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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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From making plays to calling them

Former+A%26amp%3BM+quarterback+Conner+McQueen+will+join+the+Aggies%26%238217%3B+coaching+staff+full-time+this+fall+as+an+offensive+analyst.%26%23160%3B
Photo by Kate Hanson

Former A&M quarterback Conner McQueen will join the Aggies’ coaching staff full-time this fall as an offensive analyst. 

Conner McQueen couldn’t get enough football.

As his playing days at Texas A&M winded down, McQueen was being led to Houston to begin a job at Klynveld Peat Marwick Goerdeler, an accounting firm.

“It’s one of the ‘Big Four’ accounting firms in Houston. I went through PPA and got my undergrad in accounting and master’s in financial management,” McQueen said. “You get an internship built into that program and after the internship I got a full-time job offer and accepted it because I really enjoyed it, loved the people there and thought it was what I wanted to do.”

However, McQueen still had a burning desire to stay in football, one he had since he was a kid.  Texas A&M head coach Kevin Sumlin paved his way in, offering his former quarterback a student assistant position.

“Coach Sumlin gave me the opportunity to student assistant coach during the spring and I kind of got that feeling that football wasn’t over for me yet… I got so excited and realized this is what I want to do for the rest of my life.”



Chasing a dream

McQueen’s childhood dream of coaching stemmed from his grandfather, Bob McQueen, who was the head coach at Temple High School for 28 years. During his tenure, Bob led the Wildcats to two state championships and is the 12th-winningest coach in Texas high school football history.

The decision to go into coaching was not easy for Conner, which led to daily conversations about the matter with his grandfather for two weeks before accepting the job at A&M.

Since Conner has joined staff, he maintains week-to-week talks with Bob, listening and learning from what the hall of fame coach has to say.

“He has so much wisdom from coaching for so long,” Conner said of his grandfather. “You can never learn too much and in my opinion he’s one of the greatest high school football coaches of all-time. He’s got a lot of things I can learn from him.”

While Bob was a successful coach on the field, Conner mentioned that one of the biggest lessons he has learned from his grandfather is how to acheive success outside of game day.

“Most of the stuff isn’t X’s and O’s, which so many people think that’s what a coach is,” Conner said. “[There are] so many other things when it comes to how you run your program, how you treat your players, how you treat each player individually and how you can really see a kid grow and benefit from being in their life.”



From player to coach

Upon joining staff, McQueen began spending 12 hours a day in the office as a student assistant in the spring while only taking one class.

“I didn’t have a lot of things to do,” McQueen said. “So I just spent my time up here learning the game, hanging out with the coaches.”

In the fall, McQueen will become an offensive analyst.

“[I will] do things off the field, I can’t do as much coaching on the field because of the position that I’m in,” McQueen said. “It’s a lot more breaking down film, going through meetings, teaching stuff off the field before players get onto the field.”

Still, McQueen said that he was worried about how his transition from player to coach would go with guys who knew him when he wore a jersey.

“One of the things I was worried about was not getting looked at or treated like a coach by some of the players,” McQueen said. “I wasn’t playing as much and kind of was a coach on the side, so when I switched over to a coaching role, took off my helmet, I got a lot of respect from the players.”

McQueen’s self-realizations of having others’ respect proved true to the returning players as well.

“It kind of feels like he’s been my coach for two years already just because he’s always on the sidelines coaching me up. He’s always asking what I’m seeing out there and he’s relaying it to the quarterbacks,” A&M wide receiver Christian Kirk said.

Kirk said that he does not see many differences in their relationship now.

“Having him as a coach, he’s just not in pads – that’s it,”  Kirk said.

From the full-time coaching standpoint, McQueen’s recent removal from the game as a player could be beneficial for the Aggies.

“He brings a lot to the table as far as energy,” Sumlin told reporters at the Brazos County A&M Club’s Coaches’ Night in June. “He’s close enough to being a player that [he] can feel some things some guys don’t.”



Shaping into a successful coach

The dream for McQueen remains the same – become a head coach.

“That’s one thing I enjoy and think I do well at,” McQueen said of his aspirations. “Communicating with people and using my leadership to benefit others and help motivate others.”

Former teammates of McQueen and current players believe that his future goal is attainable.

“One day he’s going to be a head coach at a big-time program,” Kirk said. “I can’t wait to see what his future holds.”

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  • Conner McQueen has stayed on with the program and is assisting in the coaching department.

  • Conner McQueen prepares for the snap.

  • Trevor Knight, Conner McQueen and Boone Niederhofer sing the Aggie War Hymn.

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