Franklin looking forward to upcoming Arkansas visit

By: Dudley E. Dawson
Published: Saturday, February 23, 2019
Javon Franklin
Javon Franklin

— While Arkansas has struggled during its current four-game losing skid heading into Saturday night’s home game with Texas A&M, former Little Rock Parkview standout Javon Franklin still sees good, young talent on the Razorbacks roster.

Franklin (6-6, 210), a 2019 Arkansas recruiting target who suffered a season-ending knee injury in his Holmes (Miss.) Community College season opener, is set to visit the Razorbacks officially March 8-10.

“There are a lot of young guys at Arkansas and the coaching staff is doing a good job of bringing them along,” Franklin said. “I think they have a lot of potential and it would be cool to be a part of that. I’ve had a great relationship with the coaches.

“When I come on my visit, I just want to see how they practice, what the atmosphere is like, how I could come and fit in and stuff like that.”

Franklin, who averaged 10.8 points and 8.7 rebounds as a freshman on a team that went 24-5 and made it to the National Junior College Athletic Association Tournament in Hutchinson, Kansas, last season, will have three years of eligibility at his next stop.

“That’s the only good thing about the injury,” said Franklin, whose team finished the regular season with a 15-8 record. “Seeing my team lose and not being able to do anything about it has been the toughest part.”

Franklin, who averaged 16 points and 8.7 rebounds his senior season at Little Rock Parkview, is currently in the process of setting up his other four official visits and is looking at several options.

“West Virginia, Auburn, Memphis, Oregon and Missouri are the other schools I am looking at,” Franklin said. “I have not set up any other visits yet, but I expect to do that very soon.”

If he ends up at Arkansas, Franklin could join two former teammates in sophomore guard Khalil Garland and freshman Ethan Henderson.

Garland has been unable to play since his arrival at Arkansas because of a medical issue.

“I talked to him the other day and he is just taking it day-by-day,” Franklin said. “He was telling me about the program and trying to make sure I come and play at Arkansas.”

Franklin was 3-of-3 from the floor and had six points, two rebounds and two blocks in Holmes' 88-75 win over Copiah-Lincoln before suffering a broken leg 11 minutes into the game while trying to take a charge.

“My leg is doing good,” noted Franklin, who went to the doctor for an update last Tuesday. “They’ve got me on a ball stimulator now and everything is moving along fine now. They haven’t given me a date yet when I will be 100 percent, but I think it will be like sometime early in the summer.”

While Franklin was mostly an inside player in high school and his freshman season at Holmes, he sees himself in a different role now.

“I think I am going to be a 3 (small forward) in college,” Franklin said. “But if I need to play the 4 and that is the best thing for me to help the team win, I’ll be glad to do that and can do that.”

Franklin believes that his game has developed since high school, especially during the past summer.

“Last year was a big year for me,” Franklin said. “I think I played really good, especially as a freshman. I enjoyed playing with all the older guys on my JUCO team.

“But I think my biggest leap as a player came during the summer. I think my game is way better than it was last year.

“I had a big offseason and the place I think improved the most was with my jump shot and my ballhandling. When I come back, I’m thinking it will be up to par and I will be good to go.”

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