The Recruiting Guy:

UA coaches connect with Wire

By: Richard Davenport
Published: Friday, May 12, 2017
Arkansas offensive line coach Kurt Anderson watches warmups during practice Saturday, April 8, 2017, in Fayetteville.
Photo by Jason Ivester
Arkansas offensive line coach Kurt Anderson watches warmups during practice Saturday, April 8, 2017, in Fayetteville.

Offensive lineman Cameron Wire is one of the nation's more heavily recruited prospects and a major target of the Arkansas Razorbacks.

Wire, 6-6, 271, of Gonzales (La.) East Ascension, has a scholarship offer from the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, and 36 other schools, including LSU, Arizona State, Auburn, Baylor, Missouri, Oregon and Oklahoma State.

Arkansas showed Wire how serious it is on Wednesday when offensive line coach Kurt Anderson and receivers coach Michael Smith visited his school.

"It was a big deal to me because it showed they were still interested," said Wire, who plays center and power forward for the school's basketball team. "They said I was still high on their priority list, and they're going to recruit me as hard as they can."

Anderson is high on the athletic Wire's ability.

"He said I could be a potential first-round pick with help from him and he can develop me into an All-American and All-SEC lineman," Wire said.

Wire said he was hoping to visit Fayetteville for the Hogs' last spring practice on April 29, but was unable to make it. He said he's looking to visit in the near future.

"I should be trying to come up this summer as soon as possible or before that," Wire said.

Wire has nearly 40 scholarships offers, but he's not seriously considering all of them.

"I have 37, but I only talk to about 15," said Wire, who plans to narrow his list of schools soon.

Wire said it is a plus for Arkansas that Smith is from New Orleans.

"Say I do go to Arkansas, he'll be a coach I'll be able to talk to," Wire said.

Wire said he has done research on the Razorbacks program and likes what he's uncovered.

"They're in the SEC," he said. "I've heard a lot about the people, the fans. I've watched a lot of video of Arkansas games. It's packed out every game. They have a lot of support. I like how the football players get degrees and the coaches stay on them about their academics."

ROCKWALL-HEATH CONNECTION

Arkansas Razorbacks running backs coach Reggie Mitchell is getting help from an Arkansas baseball signee in the recruitment of defensive back Tanner McCalister.

McCalister, 6-0, 185, of Rockwall, (Texas) Rockwall-Heath, has scholarship offers from Arkansas, Mississippi State, Missouri, Virginia, Oklahoma State, TCU, Washington State and others. The Hogs offered him on May 1.

Razorbacks baseball signee Canaan Smith, who also attends Rockwall-Heath, has spoken well of the Hogs.

"I never would've thought I would've received an offer from there," McCalister said. "With them just being in the SEC, that's obviously going to put them up there on my list with Mississippi State and Missouri."

McCalister said he has a high level of interest and has plans to visit Fayetteville with his mother in the near future.

"I want to take a visit down there and see how I would feel going to school there and see how the environment is and how the coaches treat me," McCalister said.

McCalister, who ran a 4.45-second 40-yard dash, at a TCU camp last summer, also participates in track. He runs 100-meter legs on three of his school's relay teams: the 4x100, 4x200 and 4x400. He has a best of 22 feet, 4 inches in the long jump.

Rockwall-Heath Coach Mickey Moss, a Southern Arkansas graduate who coached at Magnolia and Hamburg before moving to Texas, said college coaches like McCalister's versatility.

"They like that he's physical enough that they think he could be safety or corner for them," Moss said. "We're going to move him from corner to safety next year so he can be a greater impact on the running game."

McCalister, who has a 38-inch vertical jump, would be a valuable asset against spread teams.

"If they want to do a lot of man coverage they'll be able to get good matchups with him on the inside receivers," Moss said. "That's a pretty good thing to have for a safety."

McCalister said he had a 3.4 core grade point average going into the spring semester, but that should go up.

"This year all my final grades are straight A's," he said. "I haven't had that in high school, so who knows what my GPA will be? I'm sure my GPA will go up after my junior year."

E-mail Richard Davenport atrdavenport@arkansasonline.com

Sports on 05/12/2017

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