Wallace, Watts Invited to East-West Shrine Game
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Arkansas football seniors Brian Wallace and Armon Watts have accepted invitations to participate in the 94th East-West Shrine Game on Jan. 19, 2019, in St. Petersburg, Florida.
It is the second time in three years Arkansas has been represented in the longest running college all-star football game in the nation, as Brooks Ellis, Jeremiah Ledbetter, Drew Morgan, Dan Skipper and Deatrich Wise Jr. were invited to the 2017 contest. A total of 45 Razorbacks have participated in the event since Arkansas’ first selections in 1938 (Jim Benton & Dwight Sloan).
Wallace, from Florissant, Missouri, started 33 of 35 games played during his Razorback career on the offensive line, including each of the last 19 at right tackle. He appeared in 1,998 offensive snaps over his four years, with a career-high 756 in 2018.
With almost 2,000 snaps logged as a collegian, Wallace only allowed 10 sacks, giving up three in each of the last two seasons. In 2016, he was a member of an offensive line that paved the way for Rawleigh Williams III to capture the SEC regular season rushing title with 1,326 yards on the ground and Austin Allen to throw for an SEC-best 3,430 yards. Wallace entered the 2018 campaign as a preseason third-team All-SEC honoree and a graduate.
Watts, also a Missouri native from St. Louis, put together a memorable season in his final year as a Razorback on the defensive line. A starter in 11 of 12 games in 2018 and a graduate, Watts racked up 49 tackles, including 8.5 for loss, as well as a team-high 7.0 sacks and three forced fumbles. It was the most sacks by a Razorback since 2015 and one off the 10th-most in a single season by an Arkansas defender.
A force in the backfield for opposing offenses, Watts created fumbles against Eastern Illinois (9/1), Colorado State (9/8) and Tulsa (10/20), with the latter earning him the Crip Hall Homecoming Award, which is given to the top-performing senior in the homecoming game. He was also recognized by Pro Football Focus multiple times throughout the season, earning National Team of the Week honors in week two, SEC Team of the Week accolades in week eight and was a member of the Midseason All-SEC Team.
Wallace and Watts will take the field at 2 p.m. CST on Jan. 19, 2019, at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Florida, with the game televised on NFL Network.
BY Michael Minshew