Arkansas pressing hard for JUCO OL Myron Cunningham

By: Dudley E. Dawson
Published: Saturday, December 1, 2018
Myron Cunningham
Myron Cunningham

— Iowa Central Community College offensive lineman and Arkansas target Myron Cunningham has a big decision coming up, but first he has some on-field business to finish.

Cunningham (6-5, 300 pounds) and the No. 16 Tritons (7-4) are set to face No. 12 Monroe, N.Y., College (7-1) Sunday at 10 a.m. Central in the Graphic Edge Bowl in Cedar Falls, Iowa.

“It is a big game for us with a chance to get to 8-4 in our first year here and try to finish in the top 12 or top 10 in the country,” Iowa Central head coach Jesse Montalto said. “We are facing a really good team in Monroe out of New York. It is a very, very solid team, just good all around.

“It will be a good test for our kids. They have a Power 5 defensive lineman so it should be a good test for him.”

Cunningham, who is an early enrollee, has already taken an official visit to Oklahoma and is likely to make a decision soon after his visit to Arkansas on Dec. 7-9, according to Montalto.

“I think those two are probably the front-runners,” Montalto said. “He has gotten interest from nearly everybody in the country and we have had people in here non-stop like Texas, Maryland, Rutgers and so on.

“But I think the way those two schools have gone about the process has been great. Arkansas has probably done the best about keeping up with him and contacting his family and he is really high on Arkansas.

“Obviously the prestige of Oklahoma and how they are doing is a big positive and draw for them.”

Cunningham, who played his high school football at Warren G. Harding in Ohio, started his college career with two years at NCAA school Western Illinois before transferring to Iowa Central.

“He got here with us last spring after spending two seasons at Western Illinois and he really bought into everything when he got here,” Montalto said. “He spent the summer here, got a job on campus and worked extremely hard.

“He has had a great year for us, started all 11 games and has a really chance to be an All-American. He has set the tone for us as far was offensive line play and leadership.”

Cunningham, who will have two seasons to play without a redshirt opportunity at his next stop, is a nimble big guy, Montalto said.

“His biggest strength is probably his athleticism,” Montalto said. “He has really good feet.”

Montalto is familiar with Arkansas coach Chad Morris, Arkansas offensive coordinator Joe Craddock, Razorback offensive line coach Dustin Fry and recruiting assistant Mark Modelski.

“We are real high on them,” Montalto said. “They have a guy there in their recruiting office who worked for me in Mark Modelski. I have also gotten to know Coach Craddock and Coach Fry in the past year from the time they were at SMU, Coach Morris had also been to my previous school (Ellsworth CC) to recruit some of our guys.

“I have just been extremely impressed with their staff and they have done a great job recruiting Myron and put in a lot of time and effort.”

Discussion

Have a comment on this story? Join the discussion or start a new one on the Forums.