Richard Davenport is a recruiting columnist for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.
Hog LB recruit "an animal"
Linebacker Riley Garner has more than ten scholarships, but that’s likely to increase soon and there’s a good chance Arkansas will be one of the schools to extend an offer.
Garner, 6-3, 216 pounds of A&M Consolidated High School in College Station, Texas was one of the standouts at the U.S. Army All American Combine in January. He recorded an electronic time of 4.52 seconds in the 40 yard dash and a 36-inch vertical.
Razorback defensive backs coach Clay Jennings visited the school early Thursday and attended the afternoon practice.
“A whole bunch of guys came through last week and they’re bringing back their DC and linebackers coaches next week,” A&M Consolidated Coach David Raffield said on Thursday. “So I imagine by the end of next week, he’ll probably have 15 major Division I offers.”
A&M Consolidated defensive coordinator Dale Williams was recruited by former Arkansas Coach Lou Holtz and lettered on the offensive line for the Hogs in 1984 and 1985.
Garner isn’t a a stranger to Jennings.
“Coach Jennings loves him,” Raffield said. “He loved him when he was at TCU. Coach Jennings has been following him since he was a freshman because he recruited our area. He’s been at our practices over the years and seen him. “
Garner has a 315 pound power clean and timed at 14.9 seconds in the 110 hurdles this spring. Raffield believes Garner’s frame can carry much more weight.
“We think he’ll play next year in the mid 220’s,” Raffield said. “I think he’ll be a 240 pound linebacker in college. He’s an animal.”
Raffield and Jennings have known one another for years.
“I’ve known coach Jennings since his first job,” Raffield said. “He is a tremendous character guy and he’s great with kids. He holds them accountable, they love him. He’s great in the homes with the parents. One of my very best friends coached him when he was at Waco La Vega. I feel like I’ve known him since he was a kid. He’s one of my favorite recruiters to come in. He’s very thorough in what he does. I think he’s a great addition to the Arkansas staff.”