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Former UCLA Standout to Make Arena Football Debut

Arena Football
Former UCLA football player Brian Price, shown here as a member of the NFL’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers, will make his Arena Football League debut on May 4 as a member of the L.A. Kiss. (Image courtesy Tampa Bay Buccaneers)

Former UCLA football standout defensive tackle will make his Arena Football League (AFL) debut with the Los Angeles Kiss on May 4, it was announced.

According to reports, Brian Price, a third team All-America selection by the Associated Press and 2010 second round draft pick by the NFL’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers will play in his first-ever AFL game when the Kiss take on the Spokane Shock at the Honda Center in Anaheim.

Price, who is 6-foot-1 and 305 pounds and nicknamed “The Quiet Storm,” was also the Pat Tillman Pacific-10 Conference Defensive Player of the Year in 2009.

After forgoing his final year at UCLA, the Buccaneers selected Price, 25, with the third pick of the second round (35th overall) in the 2010 NFL Draft. He was the sixth defensive tackle selected in that draft, highlighted by Pro Bowl defensive tackles Ndamukong Suh and Gerald McCoy who were selected second and third, respectively, overall.

In his rookie campaign at Tampa Bay, Price was placed on the injured reserve list in November 2010 after suffering a pelvic injury. Price earned his first professional sack against Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan during Week 3 of the 2011 season.

After playing only five games in his rookie season, Price played in 15 of 16 games for the Buccaneers during the 2011 season. During his second season, Price was reportedly a starter in 14 of the 15 games he played.

Only 20 games into his NFL career, Price was traded by the Buccaneers to the Chicago Bears prior to the start of the 2012 season; Tampa Bay received a seventh round draft pick in return.

Price did not play a game for the Bears as he was reportedly released shortly after the trade.

The following off-season, the Dallas Cowboys took a flier on Price but, according to City News Service, was released prior to training camp.

During his time in Westwood, Price led UCLA in tackles for loss as a sophomore. He was a full-time starter for UCLA in 2008 and 2009. After the Bruins won the 2009 EagleBank Bowl, Price announced he was forgoing his final year of eligibility and declaring for the NFL draft.

At the team’s award banquet in his final season at the Hyatt Century Plaza Hotel in Century City, Price was one of UCLA’s three players to earn the program’s Henry R. “Red” Sanders Award, which is awarded to the Bruins’ most valuable players.

The Kiss-Shock game will be televised live on ESPN2; kickoff is at 4 p.m.

Russell Simmons of the rock band KISS spearheaded the return of the AFL to Southern California after the Los Angeles Avengers, which played at Staples Center, folded.

The Avengers had a presence on the Westside. Its practice facility was at West Los Angeles College. Also, the team’s owner, Casey Wasserman, was not only a UCLA graduate but also headquartered the team in the West Los Angeles area at an office building on Olympic Boulevard at Bundy Drive.

Playing in its inaugural season, the Kiss have a 2-4 record in its first six games, including losses in its last three contests heading into May 3. Despite playing in Anaheim, the Kiss identifies itself as from Los Angeles.

In keeping with the team’s nickname and ownership, Kiss games include in-game entertainment by rock bands or cover groups. The May 3 game will be headlined by 80s new wave band Flashback Heart Attack, who will perform prior to kickoff, at halftime, and during select game breaks.

Price went to Crenshaw High School

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