Georgia WR Capers becomes Arkansas' first 2020 pledge

By: Dudley E. Dawson
Published: Friday, February 8, 2019
Ze'Vian Capers
Ze'Vian Capers

— Arkansas' first 2020 gridiron commit hails from the state of Georgia.

Alpharetta Denmark wide receiver Ze'Vian Capers (6-4, 205 pounds, 4.61 seconds in the 40-yard dash), a top 300 player, according to ESPN, pledged to the Razorbacks on Friday night over Clemson, South Carolina, Florida, Michigan State, Georgia Tech, Syracuse, Duke, North Carolina, Louisville, Purdue and Virginia.

"It's a great thing to be the first one in the 2020 class," Capers said. "I hope I can help us land another great recruiting class like they had this year."

Capers visited Arkansas with his family in November and found a supportive atmosphere around Razorbacks coach Chad Morris and his program.

"It just felt like a family environment," Capers said. "Even though they didn't have a great season and went 2-10, their fans are just very genuine and supportive and care about their football players and want what is best for their football program. That is something that I just want to be a part of."

Capers, who is expected to visit Arkansas again on March 9, had 62 catches for 1,187 yards and 11 touchdowns as a junior. He also had 58 tackles, 2 tackles for loss and 3 pass breakups at safety.

He has developed a great bond with Arkansas wide receivers coach Justin Stepp.

"Me and Coach Stepp kind of keep in contact every single day," Capers said. "We text each other and sometime we even face time each other. It is more than just a player coach relationship. It is more like a family relationship. He treats me like I am his own son. That's just the main thing."

Denmark coach Terry Crowder, a 1988 graduate of Arkansas, said the Razorbacks are getting a special player.

"He will be a great ambassador for the Hogs," Crowder said. "A special athlete that can takeover a game. Tremendous and physical player that loves to compete."

After naming a Top 10 on Jan. 1, Capers narrowed his decision to Arkansas, Clemson, Florida and South Carolina.

"My strengths would definitely be my size, my athleticism and my being able to create space and high-pointing the ball," Capers said. "My weakness would probably, definitely be my speed. I can work on my speed so I can get my 40 down to a 4.5 flat. I will get that better, but my main thing is if it is me and a defender one-on-one, I am likely to come down with the ball."

Former Razorback defensive lineman Patrick Jones is the defensive line coach at Denmark and Capers' cousin Gabbi lives in Fayetteville and is married to Arkansas strength assistant Chad Cain.

Capers said the Arkansas connections did not try to sway his decision too much.

"They kind of talked about their time at Arkansas, especially Coach Jones," Capers said. "He just kind of gave me some information on how the Arkansas fans are and what it is like to be a Razorback. Same with Coach Crowder, but they always were going to support my decision no matter where I would go. That's the main important thing. They were not like, 'Go to this school or go to that school.' They were just going to support my decision no matter because they just wanted me to be comfortable."

Denmark went 5-6 in the program's first year of competition.

"We didn't have a bad season," Capers said. "We went 5-6 and that's really pretty good when you are just starting. Our goals for next season are to have an undefeated season, to win a region championship and hopefully win a state championship. We have big goals because we are going to have a lot of seniors. That will help us a lot, especially with our depth. It could be a great season for Denmark and the Denmark community."

Discussion

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