ISU's Next Speed Champion?

Iowa State could very well have a new speed champion next season if a certain tailback from Texas' Denton High School joins the mix. And at this point the Cyclones stand a very good chance at getting one of the top running backs on their list.

Standout runner Anthony Alridge has thought very highly of ISU since Seneca Wallace came along, especially since the quarterback's cousin is his best friend. Alridge and Wallace have at least one thing in common and that's world class speed. Alridge ran a 4.34 40 time once and had hit the 4.36 mark on three separate occasions.

The next step for Alridge might be following in the footsteps of Wallace, but doing it from the tailback position.

"My best friend Darius Richards' cousin is Seneca Wallace and that's what mainly got my attention up there," he said. "I saw that play Seneca made against Texas Tech over and over and over on ESPN.

"Right now Iowa State's up there mainly because they're Big 12, I like their offense and their defense is good, they're in a good location and I like the coaching staff. Coach (Mike) Grant is really cool and says I'm pretty fast. I just like Iowa State."

Alridge has scholarship offers from the likes of Kansas State, Tulsa, Pittsburgh, Arizona and Texas Christian. And who tops his list at this point?

"Iowa State is up there right now and then comes TCU," he said. "I just have one visit set right now and that's to Iowa State. I'm waiting on anything else that comes along. I will probably make a decision after my visits. I will have to see how my test scores come along."

But with a 2.9 GPA already in hand, Alridge stands a good chance at achieving a qualifying SAT score. He took the test on Nov. 2 and hopes to know the results soon. Alridge would like to major in business in college.

On the field at Denton High, Alridge has been a hard catch. He's rushed for 1,413 yards and 20 touchdowns on 141 carries. He's also a threat out of the backfield catching passes and has reeled in 27 receptions for 452 yards and five scores.

Alridge admits that he's a no nonsense running back that's not afraid to run it up inside.

"I like to hit the holes as fast as I can and am elusive," he said. "I like to use my speed and like to use that to avoid the tacklers."

The standout tailback has lined up at tailback, wide receiver and defensive back this season, but ISU's preference is to see him as a ball-carrier.

"I could play on the defensive side of the ball or wide receiver, but Coach Grant said they want me to start out at running back and that's fine," he said. "I'll play anywhere they put me."

Denton High finished the regular season with a 9-1 mark and finished second to cross-town rival Denton Ryan in District 6-4A. Alridge's team opens playoff action this Saturday against undefeated Wichita Falls.

"I'm looking forward to play Wichita Falls," he said. "Wichita Falls has the number one offensive line, but they aren't going to face anybody like us. Right now we're feeling pretty good."

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