Richard Davenport has been a recruiting columnist for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette since 2007.
Arkansas receives 3 commitments
NWA Media/MICHAEL WOODS --12/05/2012-- Bret Bielema, the new University of Arkansas head football coach, speaks to the media during a press conference Wednesday afternoon.
LITTLE ROCK Arkansas received oral commitments from three of the seven football prospects the Hogs hosted over the weekend.
Safety De’Andre Coley, 6-1, 183 pounds, 4.45 seconds in the 40-yard dash of Miami Northwestern was the first pledge to the Hogs on Sunday. He picked Arkansas over about six scholarship offers, including Cincinnati, TCU and Northern Colorado.
“I saw the school and how the academics are along with the professors,” Coley said. “The coaches are great, the players. The coaches are amazing. The fans were are the best part.”
His lead recruiter, linebackers coach Randy Shannon recently offered a scholarship to Coley, who reports times of 10.6 seconds in the 100 meters and 22.3 in the 200. His player-host was freshman linebacker A.J. Turner.
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“He told me a lot about the school and how it was when he got here and how he played,” Coley said of Turner. “He said they work hard and I like that. He said come in with a great mind and you can start.”
The day’s second commitment came from cornerback D.J. Dean, 5-11, 185, 4.55 seconds in the 40 yard dash, of Newton, Texas chose the Razorbacks over more than 10 scholarship offers, including Baylor, Illinois, Utah and Washington State.
“I loved everything about it,” Dean said. “I loved the fans. I love the support they have ... the coaches. Everybody showed love and I like that.”
Dean planned to officially visit Baylor on Feb. 1 but said he won’t make the trip. He was hosted by freshman linebacker Otha Peters
“He was like my big brother this weekend,” Dean said of Peters. “I liked that too. I’ll have some friends when I come back.”
Defensive tackle Ke’Tyrus Marks, 6-2, 285, 4.9, of Riviera Beach (Fla.) Suncoast was the final commitment of the day. He chose the Hogs over Wake Forest, Florida International, Florida Atlantic, Western Kentucky and Massachusetts in large part of because of Arkansas being in the SEC.
“The SEC conference is the toughest conference in the United States and everyone knows that.” Marks said.
Marks, who was hosted by redshirt freshman defensive lineman Jamichael Winston, praised graduate assistant Terrance Butler, Coach Bret Bielema and defensive line coach Charlie Partridge.
“Terrance is a people person,” Marks said. “He gets along with the players well. He’s a great dude. You have to love Coach B, he’s like one of the most down-to-earth coaches. Coach Partridge is going to be a great D-line coach.”
Coley, Dean and Marks give the Hogs 16 commitments for the 2013 class. Oral commitments are nonbinding.