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Tuesday, July 16, 2024

From Bulldogs To Bears, Bryson Bailey Signs With UCA

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To hear the name, Bryson Bailey, in the track world is enough to make some opponents tremble with fear. When it comes to track or anything for that matter, once Bailey sets his mind to it, there’s no turning back “I’ve grown up around the track my whole life,” Waldron Bulldog, Bryson Bryson explained. “I really started falling in love with the sport in 4th grade though. It also helps that my mom is a track coach and my current coach, Chance Tanner, went to UCA to run track. Both of them motivated me my entire life!” And the proof is in the pudding.

Not including his other top-notch performances on the football team, basketball team, baseball team, and the Beta Club, in track alone, Bryson was a member of the 2019 3A Indoor State Championship Team, 2020 3A Indoor State Championship Team, and the 2021 3A Outdoor State Runner-up Team. He holds 2 State Records, one in the 2021 3A 4x100m-43.24 and one in the 2021 3A 4x200m-1:32.59. Has six Individual/Relay State Championships: 3A Outdoor-Long Jump(2021), 4×100(2021), 4×200(2021), and 3A Indoor-Long Jump(2019 & 2020), 60m(2020). The 2020 3A Indoor State Championships Boy’s High Point. And Personal Bests in Long Jump-22’8.75”, 100m-11.03, 200m-22.75, 60m-7.15.

Bryson Bailey and Coach Chance Tanner

All of Bryson’s hard work finally paid off when on Thursday, May 13, he signed his letter of intent for Division 1 Track and Field at the University of Central Arkansas in Conway, Arkansas. “I chose UCA because one, it is close to home, and two, the jumps coach at UCA made me feel welcome from the very beginning. I’m hoping to continue my journey at UCA by winning a Conference Championship but the big goal is to make it to Nationals!” When asked what he will miss most about Bailey, Waldron Boys Track Coach and former UCA Bear, Chance Tanner, expressed “Bryson is one of those kids that you love to coach. When football season was over he was asking what he needed to do to get ready for track season. He’s a multisport athlete so he doesn’t have a lot of free time or an off-season, but even during those other sports, he would come down to the track once or twice a week or on a weekend to get a little running in or long jump. You don’t see that kind of dedication in every athlete, so when you do it’s fun to coach. I can’t wait to see what he can do at UCA!”

Bailey and his track mates

Not only is Bryson a dream athlete in any sport he participates in, but he also excels in the classroom as well. When you remove all of the sports games, track events, weight lifting, and daily practices, one wonders where Bailey even finds the time to maintain a 4.0 GPA. But he does and he does it with ease. “Sports have always been important to Bryson,” his mom and Waldron Girls Track Coach, Angie Bailey continued. “But he has also always known that to play sports you have to be dedicated in school. I am so proud of his maintaining a 4.0 along with taking AP classes, taking 24 credit hours of college classes, and becoming a CNA all while playing 4 sports. If he sets his mind on something then that’s it!”

Coach Bailey concluded, “It has been a struggle being a track coach and a mom of an athlete. It always seemed like when it was time for Bryson to jump, one of my athletes was jumping as well. But what do you do? I never missed a meet though. I not only want him to excel in track in college but also excel in his studies. He plans on going into the medical field so it will be hard to juggle both. I definitely want him to have fun but not too much fun!”

Bryson with parents Angie and Brian Bailey

Bryson, it has been an honor to follow you for the last four years. These signing days are definitely the highlight of my job. We at Resident Press are truly proud of you and can not wait to see what the rest of your journey has to offer!

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