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story.lead_photo.caption NWA Democrat-Gazette/BEN GOFF @NWABENGOFF Anthony Travis of Fort Smith Northside, division I football defensive player of the year, poses for a photo Tuesday, Dec. 11, 2018, at the Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette studio in Springdale.

DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR

ANTHONY TRAVIS

SCHOOL Fort Smith Northside

CLASS Senior

HEIGHT 6-2

WEIGHT 210

POSITION Linebacker

THE SCOOP Northside coach Mike Falleur is an old-style football coach who believes in placing his best athletes on defense. That's where Travis created havoc and ran down ball-carriers as a two-year starter at outside linebacker the Grizzlies. ... Travis led Northside with 132 tackles, including 18 stops behind the line of scrimmage. ... Travis intercepted two passes, including one against Bentonville that he returned to the Tigers' 1 that set up a touchdown in a 30-17 playoff victory over Bentonville. ... As a junior, Travis had 130 tackles, including seven sacks. ... Nicknamed "Boo" at a young age by his uncle, Fred Evans . ... Travis said he will sign in February after considering a handful of offers, including one from Tulsa. Travis said Arkansas State, Central Arkansas and Arkansas have shown interest. .... Travis is also a forward on the basketball team at Northside.

DID YOU KNOW? Anthony Travis did not play football as a sophomore, a decision he said he regretted while sitting in the stands watching the Grizzlies lose to Greenwood in the season-opener at Mayo-Thompson Stadium.

QUOTABLE

"That Bentonville game, especially with the interception I had, was a highlight for me," Travis said. "When we scored from the 1 on the next play, that gave us a lot of momentum. Beating Greenwood in our second game was also a highlight, because we hadn't beaten them in a while. We played to the best of our ability and came out with a win against a team that won a (state) championship."

-- Rick Fires • @NWARick

Sports on 12/30/2018

Print Headline: ALL-NWADG DIVISION I FOOTBALL

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