The Recruiting Guy:

Mayberry talks up Hogs to basketball prospect

By: Richard Davenport
Published: Tuesday, February 20, 2018
The Associated Press ON POINT: Arkansas men's basketball coach Mike Anderson talks to players Tuesday during the team's 75-64 road SEC win in The Pavilion at Ole Miss. Petre Thomas/The Oxford Eagle.
The Associated Press ON POINT: Arkansas men's basketball coach Mike Anderson talks to players Tuesday during the team's 75-64 road SEC win in The Pavilion at Ole Miss. Petre Thomas/The Oxford Eagle.

Arkansas Razorbacks basketball Coach Mike Anderson and his staff hosted one of the top sophomore prospects in the nation whose family has ties to the program and the state.

Guard Bryce Thompson, 6-5, 170 pounds of Booker T. Washington in Tulsa has nine scholarship offers from schools such as Oklahoma, Texas A&M, Iowa, Oklahoma State, Houston, DePaul and others.

His father, Rod, is the director of Oklahoma Run PWP, a spring and summer basketball team. He and former Razorbacks great and Tulsa native Lee Mayberry have been good friends for years.

"He's a Hog to the end, and he's been around Bryce since Bryce was born," Rod Thompson said of Mayberry. "Lee was right there when we started our AAU program, and ... he's been in my wedding. He's always telling me about the Hogs and he felt like Bryce would be good enough to play there."

Father and son are familiar with the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville because former Oklahoma Run PWP guard Keyshawn Embrey signed with the Razorbacks in November. The Thompsons were able to watch the Hogs defeat No. 21 Texas A&M 94-75 in front of 18,097 fans at Walton Arena.

"We're very familiar, but to come over and experience the atmosphere and really get a closer look, we really enjoyed it," Rod Thompson said. "The atmosphere is unbelievable."

Prephoops.com rates Thompson the No. 1 prospect in Oklahoma and No. 25 overall for the Class of 2020. Prep Hoops senior writer Matt Reynolds expects Thompson to improve his defense and ball handling and believes that will allow him to make an immediate impact in college.

"Bryce shoots the ball extremely well with excellent form," Reynolds said. "You almost expect his shot to go in every time it leaves his hand. Bryce is a gym rat whose hard work I believe will make him one of the best scorers in the 2020 class nationally."

Rod Thompson is aware that two former Booker T. Washington products -- Clint McDaniel and Landis Williams -- also played for the Hogs. His wife once attended Little Rock Central and still has family in the area.

Assistants Scotty Thurman and TJ Cleveland are heading up Thompson's recruiting. After talking to Anderson, Rod Thompson believes the Razorbacks could be Bryce's next scholarship offer.

"I think an offer will be coming soon, and like coach said he just wanted to get that relationship going and wants to get over soon to Booker T and watch him play in the playoffs," Rod Thompson said.

Headline

Receiver Devonta Lee likes how his relationship is progressing with the new Razorbacks football staff and is looking to visit Fayetteville on Saturday.

Coach Chad Morris and receivers coach Justin Stepp have been communicating with Lee.

"They've been texting me about getting up there, and I'll be up there," Lee said.

Lee, 6-2, 214 pounds, of Amite, La., has 15 scholarship offers from schools such as Arkansas, Miami, Tennessee, Texas A&M, Auburn, Ole Miss, LSU and Florida State. The Hogs have impressed him in a short period of time.

"They've been showing me love," Lee said. "They've been texting me so that means a lot to me to know they want me up there and they have me as a top priority."

ESPN rates Lee a four-star recruit, No. 27 receiver and No. 148 overall for the 2019 class.

Lee had 30 receptions for 915 yards, 30.5 yards per catch and 15 touchdowns as a sophomore. Stats for his junior year were unavailable.

Under Morris and offensive coordinator Joe Craddock, SMU threw for nearly 4,000 yards last year while averaging 38 points a game, which excites Lee.

"That's another thing I'm looking for," Lee said. "It seems like they're going to change the program. Throwing the ball around spreading it around turning it into a winning program by getting some nice prospects over there in the 2018 and 2019 classes."

Email Richard Davenport at rdavenport@arkansasonline.com

Sports on 02/20/2018

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