State sports briefs
Sun Belt, SEC partner on umpire program
The Sun Belt Conference announced Monday it has joined a baseball umpiring coalition with the SEC and Atlantic Sun Conference.
Paul Guillie, who has served as the SEC’s coordinator of baseball umpires since 2014, has assumed the same role over the Sun Belt, which includes Arkansas State University and the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.
Guillie will be responsible for recruiting, training, scheduling and evaluating umpires for the Sun Belt. Prior to becoming the SEC coordinator, he umpired numerous NCAA regional and super regionals. His officiating career was highlighted by umpiring the NCAA College World Series on four occasions.
Baseball is the seventh sport in which the Sun Belt and SEC share a joint officiating program, joining football, men’s and women’s basketball, men’s and women’s soccer, and softball.
FOOTBALL Three UCA players named to A-A team
The University of Central Arkansas had three players Monday named to the STATS FCS preseason All-American team.
Senior offensive guard Stockton Mallett (Harrison) was a second-team selection, while senior cornerback Tremon Smith and senior rover George Odum were third-team All-American selections.
Mallett was a first-team All-Southland selection in 2016, helping the UCA offense finish second in the league in rushing offense and scoring offense, and fourth in total offense. Smith and Odum were also first-team All-Southland picks last fall. Odum was UCA’s leading tackler and ranked eighth in the Southland with 86 total tackles. Smith is a two-time All-Southland cornerback who also returns punts for the Bears.