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:
Hogs' reputation gets recruit's attention
Arkansas Assistant Coach Joel Thomas works with the Razorbacks during practice on Saturday, March 30, 2013 in Fayetteville.
Less than a month after receiving a scholarship offer from Arkansas, one of the top running backs on the east coast is planning to visit the Hogs on July 23-24.
Reggie Gallaspy, of Greensboro (N.C.) Southern Guilford, received an offer June 7 from Arkansas. ESPN rates him as the No. 36 running back in the nation and the No. 20 prospect in North Carolina.
Gallaspy, 5-11, 215 pounds, 4.53 seconds in the 40-yard dash, said he wants to visit Arkansas because of the school's history of producing top running backs. He also took note when ESPN tabbed Arkansas as "Running Back U" for the 2000s.
"I mean, wow," Gallaspy said. "That's all I can really say."
Gallaspy, who is being recruited by Arkansas running backs coach Joel Thomas, has scholarship offers from 16 other schools, including Louisville, Michigan State, Duke, North Carolina State and North Carolina,
He had 282 carries for 1,704 yards and 26 touchdowns as a junior and 1,751 yards and 20 touchdowns on 177 carries as a sophomore.
Gallaspy said Thomas gave him a rundown on Arkansas and the atmosphere surrounding the program. He said Thomas told him what it's like in Fayetteville on game day and how fans follow recruiting.
"I want to experience the atmosphere," Gallaspy said. "Coach Thomas said a lot about the area, and I want to see if it's true."
Gallaspy, who has a 3.5 grade-point average, also plans to visit Boston College and Syracuse this summer. He said he plans to make his decision at some point during the season.
Safety Montrel Wilson of Keller (Texas) Fossil Ridge also plans to visit Arkansas on July 24.
Wilson, 6-3, 195, 4.59, was named first-team All-District 4-5A as a junior after he recorded 116 tackles and 4 interceptions and forced 5 fumbles.
He is orally committed to Baylor but received a scholarship offer from Arkansas running backs coach Joel Thomas on June 18.
"I like Coach Thomas, and they're in the SEC," Wilson said of the Hogs. "The way he talks to me, he seems like a real good coach. I haven't met him in person."
Wilson earned his offer from Baylor after performing well at a June 8 camp and committed to the Bears shortly afterward. He also has offers from Illinois State, Navy, Illinois, New Mexico and Texas-El Paso.
Wilson's highlight video shows an aggressive, rangy safety with sure tackling skills.
"I run the alley well, and I see things back there being pretty big and all," said Wilson, who runs on Fossil Ridge's 800-meter relay team.
Wilson will be accompanied by Fossil Ridge linebackers coach Stanley Moss during his Arkansas visit.
PROSPECT WANTS BALL
Two Arkansas freshmen, offensive lineman Brain Wallace and defensive lineman Armon Watts, signed with the Hogs in February out of St. Louis Christian Brothers.
The Razorbacks are recruiting others from the school as well, including junior receiver Roddrick Bryant, who is looking to visit Fayetteville later this month.
"I know my teammates came down ther,e and we talked a lot about it," said Bryant, who has been communicating with Arkasnas offensive line graduate assistant Eric Mateos. "We talked about the facilities, the coaching staff. It just seems like a good place, and I really want to come down and check it out."
Bryant, 6-3, 180, 4.55, received a scholarship offer from Illinois in early June. He is also drawing interest from Florida State, Michigan, Auburn, Iowa, Iowa State and Nebraska.
Bryant recorded 26 receptions for 411 yards and 2 touchdowns in 8 games as a sophomore and displayed an uncanny ability to make the tough catches in traffic.
"I just try not to drop a pass," Bryant said. "I feel like every ball is a catchable ball, and I work my hardest to catch every ball and just try to get physical with the defensive back and win the battle."
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Sports on 07/04/2014