Sleeper Defensive Lineman Makhi Armstrong Emerging as College Prospect

Local Sports

FAYETTEVILLE — It’s easy when a team is 0-7 on the season to overlook all its prospects, but in the case of West Helena Central Class of 2021 defensive lineman Makhi Armstrong that would be a mistake.

Armstrong, 6-4, 335, and his teammates have lost three of the seven games by four points or less. They will head to Crossett on Friday for another conference game. Armstrong can be a defensive tackle or nose guard at the next level.

“For me, to be injured,” Armstrong said. “The first game I injured my knee. I really don’t pay that no mind. I’m still having fun. Going out and making plays. I don’t really pay attention to the losses. I do all I can do. I go to practice, have fun with my teammates and play on Friday nights.”

He holds offers from UAPB, Henderson State and Northeastern State at this time.

“The rest of the other college coaches are calling and talking to me,” Armstrong said. “They are checking on my grades and stuff. A coach told me my grades had improved and he was like, ‘I knew you wanted it so keep grinding for it.’ I was like yes sir.”

Armstrong talked about the improvement he has seen from the Razorbacks this season.

“Everything have a day,” Armstrong said. “Every player has a day. There can always be a turnaround.”

Armstrong, like many others in Arkansas and around the country, would have more offers had they been able to have college coaches come to the spring drills, go to camps in summer, take unofficial and official visits and have scouts at their games this fall. Instead, COVID-19 restrictions have prevented all that. He talked about how he stayed in shape during the pandemic before teams were allowed to train and prepare for the 2020 season.

“Me and my teammates just had our own summer practices,” Armstrong said. “We had our own football training. We were upset about COVID taking away training and camps and stuff. We were upset about that. All we could do was practice and maintained from the summer up to the first game. So we stayed in shape til then.”

Armstrong talked about what he feels are his strengths on the football field.

“It’s a standoff,” Armstrong said. “Make a play, a big play. In my game one of my plays is gonna be a standout. So I’m know someboy has got to see this. When somebody sees it I know the next person is gonna see it. So I just play.”

As far as an area where he needs to improve Armstrong had something in mind.

“I was just thinking to myself I’m gonna grind harder,” Armstrong said. “Push myself harder. I’m gonna work on my own, but at the same time maintain my grades. School is still first. But I’m gonna still work in the offseason.”

Are you more comfortable playing the run or rushing the passer?

“It don’t even matter,” Armstrong said. “Wherever I see that ball I’m gonna go it down. I’m gonna go attack the ball.”

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