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Football: Cajun dads Wallace, Dotson nearing end of second run

Tim Buckley, The Advertiser, Jan. 3, 2020

When the 2019 season finishes for UL playing Miami (Ohio) at Monday night’s LendingTree Bowl in Mobile, Alabama, safety Deuce Wallace and offensive guard Kevin Dotson won’t be the only ones pondering the end of their Ragin’ Cajun careers.

It also will complete a second run for Donnie Wallace and Kelcy Dotson.

The first time around, it was them playing for UL.

This time, they’re the dads who for the last five years have been influencing their sons’ work for the Cajuns.

Related: UL's Dotson named AP All-American; Hunt to miss bowls

“He gets more amped up for the games than I do, which is crazy,” Wallace said of his father, a prolific UL quarterback in the early-to-mid 1980s who went on to a career as an operations executive with the PGA Tour.

“He understands not only what the game does for you, but everybody else, and the relationships you build, because he’s still in contact with his teammates to this day.”

Neither Dotson nor Wallace saw their father play in person.

But Dotson has viewed a few video clips of his dad, who played outside linebacker for the Cajuns in the mid-1990s and now oversees school bus transportation back home near Plaquemine High.

More: Cajuns QB Lewis 'not afraid to make mistakes' any longer

“I know what my dad was about off the plays he has shown me,” Dotson said.

Wallace also has watched the surviving grainy tape of his father’s playing days, which was recorded on VHS and since then has been preserved on DVDs.

What he’s seen is a different game from a different day, one when the rules were much looser and the hits seemed a lot harder.

“We’re soft nowadays,” Wallace said. “It’s so different.

“The game back then was a different type of physicality. I wish I played in that era sometimes.”

More: Cajuns will face 'Cradle of Coaches' in LendingTree Bowl

As much as the game has changed, though, one thing has not.

It’s the drive behind it.

When UL beat UL Monroe in its Senior Day game at Cajun Field, Deuce Wallace said, his father “was making sure I was ready — not to get too emotional before the game, just make sure to keep the main thing the main thing.”

“He told me he was proud of me,” Wallace said. “That was the best thing I could hear. He’s my best friend, so to be able to hear that before a game, I was ready to go at that point.”

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