The Recruiting Guy:

Highly recruited DE Mataio Soli commits to Arkansas

Published: Saturday, June 9, 2018
Former Hog Junior Soli and son Mataio
Former Hog Junior Soli and son Mataio

Highly recruited defensive end Mataio Soli has committed to Arkansas over Florida, Auburn and numerous others.

He recently narrowed his list of more than 50 offers to Arkansas, Florida and Auburn. He’s an admirer of Coach Chad Morris and the staff.

“It’s the best fit for me,” Soli said. “I love Coach Morris and I love the staff. They have big things planned for Arkansas. I had a great time on the official visit.”

Soli, 6-3, 227 pounds, from Douglasville (Ga.) Douglas County, also has offers from schools like Alabama, Florida State, Oregon, Stanford, Virginia, Vanderbilt and others. His father Junior Soli played nose guard for the Hogs and earned All-SEC honors in 1995.

Fayetteville felt like the place he needed to be.

“I just had the home feeling,” Soli said. “When I was there I made a whole lot of friends with a whole lot of the players and everybody there.”

He and his family visited the Razorbacks in April. Soli's mother, Karen, who’s from Sparkman, graduated from Arkansas along with several other family members.

Soli, who made 77 tackles, 18 sacks and 20 tackles for loss as a junior, knew he might pledge to the Hogs before the visit.

“I was thinking about it,” Soli said. “Arkansas was big on my list. To be committed and finally be done with the recruiting process is great.”

His primary recruiters were defensive tackles coach John Scott Jr. and defensive ends coach Steve Caldwell.

Receiver Shamar Nash and Soli are the No. 5 and No. 6 commitments for the 2019 class. Oral commitments are non-binding.

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