WEATHER ALERT

Challenging evening commute ahead as rain, snow showers redevelop

Shawnee assistant ‘still kicking’ as QB

South grad Wallace just finished 13th season of arena football. His team lost title game to Cincinnati on Monday.


By David Jablonski

Staff Writer

SPRINGFIELD — Chris Wallace’s younger teammates called him “O.G.” — as in Old Guy.

In the real world, the 36-year-old isn’t old. In the football world, the former South High School and University of Toledo quarterback is an antique, from the same generation as NFL veterans like Tom Brady and Matt Hasselbeck.

Yet Wallace, as he said, is “still kicking.” He just completed his 13th season in arena football, leading the Florida Tarpons to the championship game of the Ultimate Indoor Football League. They lost 61-44 to the Cincinnati Commandos on Monday. Wallace completed 22-of-42 passes for 241 yards with five touchdowns and an interception.

“We were 12-0 and got to the championship game and fell short, but all in all, it was a heck of a season,” Wallace said. “I’ve got one ring from 2004. I wanted this one and to be undefeated. It just wasn’t in the cards.”

Wallace wants to be a head coach at the high school level some day. He has applied for the Springfield job the last two years, and after several seasons as an assistant at Springfield, he has joined Rick Meeks’ coaching staff at Shawnee.

That doesn’t mean Wallace is finished as a player. He didn’t expect to play this year because of family obligations in Springfield. He got an offer from the Tarpons three games into the season that was too good to turn down.

That extended a career that began in 2000 with the Carolina Rhinos of Arena Football 2. He later played for the Orlando Predators and then spent eight seasons with the Florida Firecats. He became AF2’s all-time leading passer in 2009, the last season before the league dissolved.

Last season, Wallace played with the New Orleans Voodoo and the Pittsburgh Power.

“The game has been a blessing to me,” he said. “It’s showed me so much. It’s not easy to play this long. I don’t care what kind of football it is. We’ll see what next year brings.”


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Sports

Wright State back on the boards; 5 more takeaways from win over Toledo
Wright State back on the boards; 5 more takeaways from win over Toledo

When Wright State was bludgeoned on the boards in a 19-point loss at Murray State on Saturday, coach Scott Nagy didn’t blame his frontcourt or any of his players. He put the onus on himself. “What’s always been important to me is rebounding, because I think it’s a ‘heart’ stat. It’s an indication of how hard...
WATCH: College basketball player apparently elbows opponent's face, gets barred from campus
WATCH: College basketball player apparently elbows opponent's face, gets barred from campus

A basketball player for Fitchburg State University in Massachusetts has been indefinitely suspended from the team and barred from campus for apparently throwing an elbow into an opponent's face.  The broadcast of the NCAA Division III basketball game posted to Fitchburg's website appears to show number 23, listed on the roster as Kewan Platt...
Signing period: Area seniors who will play at the next level
Signing period: Area seniors who will play at the next level

The week-long early signing period for basketball and the regular signing period for all NCAA Division I and II sports but football began on Wednesday, Nov. 14. NCAA D-I football will have an early signing period from Dec. 19-21. The traditional regular signing period for football is Feb. 6-April 1 of 2019. The following are area high school seniors...
Ohio State looking to extend noon dominance
Ohio State looking to extend noon dominance

Ohio State and Maryland are set to kick off at noon Saturday — the perfect time for the Buckeyes so far in the Urban Meyer era.  Perfect as in they haven’t lost a noon kickoff yet since he took over as the coach in Columbus.  The Ohio State sports information department produced that eye-opening stat this week: 29-0 in games that...
Hue Jackson on return to Bengals: ‘Excited to join a team in playoff contention’
Hue Jackson on return to Bengals: ‘Excited to join a team in playoff contention’

Hue Jackson was hoping he could make his way back to the Cincinnati Bengals when the Cleveland Browns fired him as their head coach three weeks ago, but he said he has no regrets about leaving Cincinnati in the first place. The Bengals named Jackson a special assistant to the head coach Tuesday to help Marvin Lewis as he assumes the role of defensive...
More Stories