TULSA, Oklahoma – At the beginning of the season, quarterback G.J. Kinne knew other receivers would have to step up in the absence of Damaris Johnson.
He also said he had a good feeling about Clay Sears.
Though it took him a couple of games, Sears is proving Kinne right. The hybrid tight/end receiver had nine catches for 105 yards and two touchdowns.
"G.J. was putting the ball exactly where he needed to put it," Sears said. "It fell right into my lap; I couldn't not catch it."
Saturday's win against UAB marked the first time a Tulsa tight end went over the 100-yard mark in six years.
Kinne said he was happy to see Sears put up a career game on Saturday.
"He's a guy that's been here for a long time, that means something to him," Kinne said. "He's got the best hands on the team."
Coach Bill Blankenship said Sears' increased involvement in the offense isn't a surprise and that Sears is the type of guy who can make a lot of different plays.
After walking on as a quarterback originally, he moved to tight end but was never much of a threat to catch the ball.
But six games into his senior year, he already has more catches and yards than the first three years of his career combined.
"Last year I was used more as a tight end and to block and every once in a while do some sort of a surprise play," Sears said. "But I'm glad to be used now as a receiver and a tight end and I feel like it's working out pretty good."