Javascript is required.

Bridging Continents and Breaking Records

Senior punter Lucas Dean is featured in the UTSA/Army game program

by Amber Sutherland, UTSA Athletics Communications

Hailing from the southwestern corner of Australia, Lucas Dean's roots lie in a place where the sport of Australian rules football reigns supreme. Growing up with this sport, Dean inherited his passion for punting from his father, a professional player who later dabbled in punting. This early exposure sowed the seeds of a future career that would take him across the globe.

Dean's journey across more than 10,000 miles from Dunsborough, Australia, to UTSA began when he joined Prokick Australia, a prestigious punting academy.

“I loved punting and wanted to have the opportunity to play American football at the collegiate level, so when UTSA reached out to me, I knew it would be a great way to pursue my dreams and get my degree.”

Transitioning from Australian rules football to American football was not without its challenges. In Australian rules football, the game unfolds across an oval field with a unique set of rules, making it distinct from its American counterpart. However, Dean's innate talent for kicking, honed through years of playing Australian rules football, provided him with a solid foundation for punting.

As a multi-year all-conference performer and 2020 All-American and Conference USA Special Teams Player of the Year, Dean has proven himself among the best in the collegiate football landscape.

His accomplishments extend beyond the field, as he's earned recognition on the College Sports Communicators (formerly CoSIDA) Academic All-District Team and the Conference USA All-Academic Team, showcasing his dedication to excellence both in the game and in the classroom.

On the field, Dean's punting prowess is nothing short of spectacular. Armed with a UTSA career-record 43.9-yard average and seven of the eight longest punts in program history, his leg has become a formidable weapon for UTSA. Dean's precision is equally impressive, having pinned opponents inside their 20-yard line an astounding 86 times on 219 punts. His powerful kicks, 58 of which exceeded 50 yards, have kept opponents at bay, highlighting his ability to control the game's field position.

A standout moment in Dean's career came during a 2022 showdown with Texas Southern when he averaged a staggering 60.6 yards on four punts, three of which exceeded the 50-yard mark. Among these kicks was the school-record 76-yard bomb that left fans and opponents alike in awe. It was a performance that solidified Dean's reputation as a game-changer on the football field.

Dean's favorite aspect of his UTSA experience isn't just the thrill of victory on the football field, but the close-knit bond he shares with his teammates. The supportive coaches, a strong team culture and the pursuit of excellence define his college football experience.

“Regardless of the results, the culture has been the same the whole time. If we don't uphold the culture in a game regardless of the result, Coach would criticize us for that sort of thing” Dean explains. “Coach just gave us this definition a few weeks ago that success is a peace of mind knowing I did my best, and that really has resonated with me during my time here.”


Reflecting on his time at UTSA, Dean cherishes the memory of the 2021 conference championship, a testament to the team's remarkable journey from a humble start. The progression from a four-win season to league title speaks volumes about the resilience and determination of Dean and his teammates.

To younger players aspiring to follow in his footsteps, Dean offers sage advice:

“Trust your coaches and be coachable. Even on the hardest days, when criticism feels like a burden, it's a sign of growth and progress.”

Embracing this mindset has been a key to Dean's success on and off the field.

As Dean contemplates his future, he envisions himself staying in Texas, drawn to the pleasant climate and abundant job opportunities. While he acknowledges the uncertain nature of an athlete's career, he remains optimistic about what lies ahead, and he's ready to embrace it with the same tenacity that led him to UTSA.