Brian Allen’s achievements highlight the past year

By Ken Ryan | For Sun-Times Media | @kenryan15

Hinsdale Central's Brian Allen won state titles in wrestling and shot put, and signed with MSU for football

Before Brian Allen attended his first class at Hinsdale Central, he knew he was going to be constantly compared to his older brother Jack.

Jack Allen, who is currently in his second season as a starting offensive lineman for the Michigan State football team, was an all-state lineman for the Red Devils and captured the 285-pound wrestling state championship as a senior.

Now in his senior season at Hinsdale Central, Brian Allen has more than lived up to the standard set by his older sibling.

Not only is he the defending state wrestling champ at 285, he won a state championship in the shot put last spring as a member of the track and field team. Comparisons will inevitable be made once again when he joins his brother at Michigan State in the fall.

“I’ve been escaping his shadow for a long time,” said Allen, who is ranked as the nation’s No. 2 center by the 247Composite. “I had big shoes to fill at Hinsdale Central and now that I have done that, I want to finish the wrestling season off right and get up there [East Lansing, Mich.] and start making a name for myself. My goal is to repeat as state champ, finish off my high school career and then get bigger, faster and stronger to compete at Michigan State.”

Allen’s accomplishments this past year are No. 1 on the Doings/Pioneer Press West Top Sports Stories of 2013 list.

“It was a pretty special year with everything that happened athletically,” Allen said. “Looking back on it, I was happy with how I was able to cap off the year. There were a lot of memorable moments. I’ve played sports since I was 6 and I always did pretty well, but I never accomplished anything like this year. This is a year I will remember for a long time.”

Allen considers his decision to commit to Michigan State in April as his highlight of the year, with the wrestling championship right up there.

Jack Allen, a redshirt sophomore, was named second-team All-Big Ten by the media and was preparing to play in the Rose Bowl Jan. 1 in Pasadena, Calif., against Stanford. The Spartans (12-1) are ranked fourth in the country.

“It’s been fun watching not only him, but Michigan State,” Brian Allen said. “Seeing what he’s accomplished I’m excited to get up there and start putting in the work for myself.”

While Allen’s family was set to be in Pasadena for the Rose Bowl, he had other plans. He was selected to participate in the prestigious U.S. Army All-American Bowl Jan. 4 in San Antonio, Texas.

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