Richard Davenport covers recruiting for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. He is the host of Recruiting Thursday, a weekly radio show that airs from 7 to 8 p.m. on 92.1 FM in Fayetteville; 93.7 FM in Little Rock; 95.3 FM in Fort Smith; 96.3 FM in Hot Springs; 104.3 FM in Harrison/Mountain Home; and 106.9 FM in Arkadelphia.
THE RECRUITING GUY:
End intrigued by ‘best college football in world’
Arkansas hosted seven prospects on official visits this weekend.
Miami Killian defensive end Anthony Brown, 6-3 1/3, 235 pounds, is orally committed to Florida International but wanted to visit other schools, including Arkansas.
Playing in the SEC is one of several reasons he is interested in the Razorbacks.
“Who wouldn’t want to play in the SEC, the best college football in the world?” Brown said before his visit. “Arkansas told me I might have the opportunity to play my first year. They trust me even though I’ve only been playing this sport for two years. That’s another big thing, the trust.
“They also know I need to be taught. They know what they’re getting out of me, and they respect that. That’s another thing I saw in Arkansas that I did like.”
Linebackers coach Randy Shannon is Arkansas’ lead recruiter on Brown and has told him the coaches like him as a pass rusher.
“That’s one of the things I like to do,” Brown said. “I had big eyes, like, if I can come in here and pass rush and we can build off of that, that would be great.”
Brown has scholarship offers from Arkansas, Michigan State, Mississippi State, Cincinnati and others and had praise for Shannon’s approach to recruiting.
“He came to my school and came to my house,” Brown said. “We had a good conversation. When I spoke to him it wasn’t all about football. We had a conversation and laughed a little bit. … He’s a nice guy.”
Brown said he might take official visits to Mississippi State and Cincinnati, but he said he is still orally committed to Florida International. Oral commitments are nonbinding.
“I’m looking at all schools,” he said. “All my options are open, just waiting until February to sign.”
Brown’s athleticism stands out on his highlight tape. During his junior season while playing on the offensive line, he chased down a defensive back who made an interception at the opponent’s 10 and was on his way to an apparent 90-yard touchdown return before Brown caught him about 5 yards short of the goal line.
“I wasn’t just going to watch him score, so I just ran after him,” Brown said. “Then everybody said that’s a play you put on your highlight tape.” WEARING DOWN
Miami Gulliver Prep cornerback Cornelius Floyd might end his recruitment today when he finishes up his official visit to Arkansas.
Floyd, 6-1, 170 pounds, 4.49 seconds in the 40-yard dash, has scholarship offers from approximately 17 schools, including Arkansas, Oklahoma, Central Florida, Wake Forrest, West Virginia, Pittsburgh and Virginia.
“I’ve narrowed it down to my top three,” Floyd said before his visit. “Arkansas is in it, UCF and Oklahoma.”
Floyd said he is considering taking official visits to Oklahoma and Central Florida and will likely visit Oklahoma next weekend.
“It’s starting to wear down, I’m getting tired,” said Floyd, who is being recruited by Arkansas linebackers coach Randy Shannon and cornerbacks coach Taver Johnson. “A lot of coaches, a lot of phone calls, a lot of interviews.”
Floyd was accompanied by his parents, Nelson and Audrey, on his Arkansas visit.
A NICE SURPRISE
Junior defensive lineman Jozie Milton of Clinton (La.) Silliman Institute was in chemistry class Jan. 10 when he received word Arkansas had extended a scholarship offer to him.
Arkansas was the first school to offer Milton, who is a 2015 recruit. Arizona State and Louisiana Tech followed Arkansas’ lead with offers.
“I couldn’t stop smiling the rest of the day,” said Milton, who will visit Arkansas on Feb. 22. “I’m still in kind of disbelief for some reason. It’s kind of a dream come true. Kind of like a fantasy.”
Milton, 6-3, 294, 4.9, had 110 tackles, 36 tackles for loss and 9 sacks this past season. He also plays center and is the snapper on special teams.
“It shocked me that my first offer was from an SEC school,” said Milton, who recorded a 365-pound bench press and 605-pound squat last summer. “I thought it was going to be a little small college.
“Arkansas offered me, and when I got to the weight room I was just throwing around stuff trying to get better because there’s no way I’m prepared for college right now. I’m trying to work as hard as I can in the weight room now.”
Email Richard Davenport at firstname.lastname@example.org
Sports, Pages 34 on 01/19/2014