Dream Come True For Quarterback Signee

Auburn quarterback signee Jonathan Wallace from Phenix City talks about his decision to sign with the Tigers.

Phenix City, Ala.--uarterback Jonathan Wallace had made commitments to both Southern Miss and Central Florida in the last year, but in the back of his mind he was always thinking about the Auburn Tigers.

Finally getting an offer just before signing day, the 6-2, 205-pounder says for him the choice to sign with the Tigers was one he didn't make lightly, but one he went into without any regrets.

"It was pretty tough because the setup down there was great," Wallace says of Central Florida. "I don't look back on it now. I have made my decision and I'm happy with it.

"You just have to work, that's the main thing," he says. "Wherever you go as a recruit you have to go to work. It falls back on you and what goals you set for yourself and how hard you're going to work."

Something that worked in Auburn's favor was that the Tigers kept in constant contact with Wallace throughout the summer and fall after he performed well at a football camp on campus following a strong performance as a junior.

Living up to the expectations for his senior season by earning All-Bi-City Co-Offensive Player of the Year after throwing for 1,761 yards and 12 touchdowns while adding 891 yards and 28 touchdowns on the ground, Wallace notes that it was big for him that Auburn never stopped talking to him throughout.

"It played a big factor for me," he points out. "It got to a point where I had to start moving on and making something for myself and not trying to worry so much about what Auburn was going to do and whether they would offer or not. I never really knew when that time would come, but it came and I'm happy with it. I just have to make the best of it."

Wallace throws the ball well and is a physical runner.

Coming in to Auburn this summer, Wallace will be one of just four quarterbacks on the AU roster. None of the quarterbacks have extensive game experience, even returning starter Clint Moseley. Because of that and having a new offense to learn under first-year coordinator and QB coach Scott Loeffler, Wallace says he's ready to see how he stacks up once he gets on campus.

"Having a new offensive coordinator, everyone has to learn something new," says Wallace, who is an honor student at Central High. "The only thing they will have on me is the 15 practices in the spring. Other than that we will all be on the same page learning a new system.

"That is just part of it," he says. "He may be here a year or two and then gone. You never know with coaches. Whatever is there you have to take advantage of it."

Wallace is shown during Central's victory over Oxford High during the quarterback's junior season.

Getting to know Loeffler is something that Wallace admits he's still in the process of doing as the new coach hit the ground running on the recruiting trail and hasn't had the opportunity to spend much time with his new quarterback. It didn't matter to Wallace, however, after he talked to Loeffler and read up on his accomplishments as a coach and learned about the quarterbacks he's worked with over the years. That was enough to sell Wallace on what his new coach can do to help his game on the next level.

"He develops quarterbacks and that's one thing I really like about him," Wallace notes. "We really just talked about some things and about getting me to Auburn. He's a great guy. He's young. He's full of energy. That's what I liked about him off the bat.

"I'm actually going up there Sunday to talk even more with him and get a better look at what we're going to do this season," Wallace adds.

Wallace poses with an award he won last spring at the MVP Camp for football prospects.

Now signed with the Auburn Tigers, Wallace says it's still hard to imagine how things came together so perfectly for him down the stretch. Eager to show he can play on the next level, he says it is now just a matter of preparing himself to make a run at playing time next season.

"It's a tremendous thing," Wallace says of the chance to play for the Tigers. ""It's something I've always wanted. The opportunity to be able to go to Auburn and play the position of quarterback is exciting. I'm just taking it all in right now. I know eventually it will be time to go to work. That's what I plan on doing is going there and competing."

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