Time To Shine

Fayetteville junior quarterback Austin Allen (6-2, 205) showed this weekend at the Southwest Elite 7-on-7 Showcase that he is ready to step into older brother Brandon's spot and flourish right away.

SPRINGDALE – For the third straight season at the Southwest Elite 7-on-7 Showcase tournament, there was a quarterback with the last name of Allen whipping the ball around the field for Fayetteville.

But this year it was junior Austin Allen (6-2, 205), who is stepping out of the shadows of older brother Brandon, who signed with Arkansas after a high school career in which he passed for over 10,000 yards and nearly 100 touchdowns for the Purple Bulldogs.

After dominating the junior high ranks and getting an offer from Tulsa before he started high school practice, Austin had to sit behind his older brother last season and wait his turn.

"I'm looking forward to it really," Allen said. "I am looking forward to getting back on the field and playing. I think I will be ready for it. If I show what I can do, then everything will work out like it should."

The younger Allen – son of Arkansas assistant coach Bobby Allen - showed off his talent in a couple of games last season – including a 9-of-11 performance against Rogers.

"I have got to be more of a vocal leader on the field and have got to work on my decision making," Allen said. "But I think I am going to be ready for the challenge."

Tulsa obviously thought so with the early offer that was relayed by Fayetteville head coach Daryl Patton.

"Coach Patton called me in the office one day when I was headed to baseball and he told me that Tulsa had offered me," Allen said. "I was very surprised. I thought he was joking. I have no clue where that came from."

He has since gotten mail and interest from schools such as Arkansas, Alabama, Ole Miss, Penn State.

Although Brandon Allen was viewed as one of the nation's best quarterbacks, his offer list was held down because he committed early and because his dad coached at Arkansas.

"I will probably keep my options open a little bit longer than Brandon did," Allen said. "He committed to Arkansas right after his sophomore year so I am already passed that."

But like his brother, he has basically grown up around the Razorback program and it will have a definite pull.

"I have been around it all my life, love them and have always cheered for them," Allen said. "It is my favorite team."

Allen naturally credits his dad for a lot of his development.

"When I was a young kid we would go back out in the yard and work on our form, work on our drops," Allen said. "He has been huge in all of our lives."

Allen has a variety of weapons to go to as was evidenced at the tournament this past weekend – although senior Nathan Varady hurt his shoulder in the opening game.

"It makes my life a lot easier," Allen said. "We have Nathan, who has 4.3 speed and catches everything thrown his way. Brad Culp is also a D-I prospect. Casey Perry has great hands and is a great route runner. Scotty Thurman is great and Tyler Tuck is going to flourish as a tight end."

Austin Allen

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