Friday a.m. news & links: Arenas, Wilson and more

Javier Arenas Alabama vs. LSU Photo by UA
Javier Arenas Alabama vs. LSU Photo by UA

Some Friday morning links and good news for Alabama fans.

Arenas Selected as Finalist for Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award
From UA: TUSCALOOSA – Alabama defensive back Javier Arenas was selected as one of 30 finalists for the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award, which was announced on Friday by Lowe’s.

An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School, the award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.

Arenas has volunteered more than 50 hours of community service throughout the Tuscaloosa community. He has spent time in the local school systems speaking to children about the dangers of bullying and the positive effects of teamwork. Arenas has also attended birthday parties of physically challenged children and reached out with phone calls to children battling cancer.

On the field, he is one of the most dangerous return men in the county and an All-SEC cornerback, Arenas will factor heavily into the Crimson Tide defense and special teams as a senior in 2009. His 650 punt return yards led the nation and set an Alabama single-season record while he also registered 63 tackles at corner. The Tampa, Fla. native was selected as a preseason Playboy All-American, but his accomplishments in the classroom and in the community are bringing him accolades off the field as well.

To be eligible for the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior in the Football Subdivision and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence – classroom, character, community and competition.

After narrowing the list to 10 finalists midway through the regular season, ballots will be distributed through a nationwide voting system to media, coaches and fans, who will select one finalist who best exemplifies excellence in the four Cs of classroom, character, community and competition.
John Parker Wilson looked good in last night’s Falcons preseason game. According to the AP, “Wilson, an undrafted rookie whose former college team, No. 5 Alabama, will be at the Dome on Saturday night to face seventh-ranked Virginia Tech, played the rest of the first half and part of the third quarter. He completed 13 of 19 for 80 yards and directed Atlanta’s only scoring drive near the end of the first half, resulting in Jason Elam’s 45-yard field goal. Wilson got the Falcons into scoring position again on his last possession of the night, but Elam hooked a 35-yard attempt wide left. Shockley, who hasn’t done much in three years mostly spent as Atlanta’s third QB, hardly improved the chances of hanging with his hometown team for another year. He entered to cheers from fans who still remember him leading Georgia to a Southeastern Conference title in 2005, but completed just 2 of 6 passes for 15 yards with a late interception.” (read the entire AP report embedded below)