San Diego (Calif.) Rancho Bernardo outside linebacker Aaron Wallace (6-3, 220) had two intriguing options when he narrowed his schools last week to UCLA and Texas A&M.
If he picked the Aggies, he’d follow in the footsteps of his father, an A&M legend. If he picked the Bruins, he’d be playing close to home, for one of the few West Coast teams that he followed.
In Orlando at the Gridiron Kings, Wallace announced for the Bruins.
“I’m picking UCLA,” said Wallace. “I really think that the academics are really good there, and being close to home and being close to my family is important. With UCLA, I really want a school that I can say I’ll be proud to have gone to.”
Wallace said he felt the obvious pressure of playing for A&M.
“Yeah, my dad, he wanted me to go to A&M and has been recruiting me to there,” said Wallace. “But the decision was for me. I felt the pressure and he said it was always ‘Aaron Jr’s decision’.
Wallace’s mom Sandra, who he lives with in San Diego, was open to wherever he son chose, whether that be UCLA or Texas A&M.
“She just wanted me to make my decision and be happy with it, which I am,” said Wallace. “But she’s really excited. I can come down on weekends every once in a while. And I know that she’ll be able to make it to a lot of my games.”
Wallace was in Orlando this weekend for the Gridiron Kings event, one of 16 of the West’s top skill players, and he said he was going to do some work on the other Bruin targets.
“I’ll do the best I can to recruit for UCLA, but I’ll try for sure,” said Wallace.
The three-star linebacker landed his offer from the Bruins late last month after a stellar performance at the UCLA camp.
Now, he’ll come in the fall of 2011, hopeful that All-American candidate Akeem Ayers is there for him to learn from.
“I think it will be strongside where I’ll play, where Akeem Ayers is at,” said Wallace. “Whatever decision he makes, I’ll move accordingly, but it wouldn’t be bad to have a year behind him.”
With the decision over and out of the way, Wallace is looking forward to a relatively stress-free senior season.
“Yeah, it’s definitely a relief,” said Wallace. “All these offers, all these scenarios can get into your head. So getting this out of the way can help me focus and really just help me out and get prepared for my senior season.”
Wallace becomes the sixth known commitment for the Bruins in the class of 2011 and the first on the defensive side of the ball.