Richard Davenport has been a recruiting columnist for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette since 2007.
Top 100 junior likes SEC and Hogs
Arkansas Coach Bret Bielema leaving Wisconsin and heading to Fayetteville caught the attention of highly regarded junior offensive lineman Jamarco Jones.
Jones, 6-6, 290 pounds of Chicago De La Salle reports 16 scholarship offers, including Michigan, Norte Dame, Ohio State, Wisconsin and Florida but is very much interested in the Hogs and hopes to visit in the future.
"I figured there must be some reason why went there," Jones said of Bielema going to Arkansas. "I look forward to seeing how he does with the program. He's a good coach and I'm pretty sure he'll get them back on the winning path next year."
Jones, who's rated the No. 96 junior prospect in the nation by national recruiting analyst Tom Lemming of CBS Sports Network, likes the combination of the SEC and the Razorback program.
"They play in the SEC , the best conference in college football," said Jones, who reports talking to Hog offensive line coach Sam Pittman about a week ago. "They have a great program. They had a down year but they have a great history of football."
He believes playing in the SEC could help his development and aid him in getting to the next level.
"Every week you're going to play against the best players in the nation," Jones said. "The SEC has the top players and the most players drafted so you're going up against top competition week in and week out and even in practice you're going to be going best players. It definitely helps.”
Jones, who has a 3.9 grade point average, is looking to major in business or accounting in college while also looking for a comfort level in football.
"The coaching staff makes a huge difference , academics plays a huge part," Jones said. "I want to go where I can get a great education and a place I feel comfortable."