Richard Davenport covers recruiting for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. He is the host of Recruiting Thursday, a weekly radio show that airs from 7 to 8 p.m. on 92.1 FM in Fayetteville; 93.7 FM in Little Rock; 95.3 FM in Fort Smith; 96.3 FM in Hot Springs; 104.3 FM in Harrison/Mountain Home; and 106.9 FM in Arkadelphia.
The Recruiting Guy:
No question about Wise being a Hog
11/14/15 Arkansas Democrat-Gazette/STEPHEN B. THORNTON Arkansas' Deatrich Wise Jr. sacks LSU's QB Brandon Harris on their first big drive in the second quarter during their game Saturday in Baton Rouge, La.
When defensive end Deatrich Wise Jr. committed to Arkansas on Aug. 7, 2011, he never questioned his pledge to the Hogs.
Prior to his senior season at Carrollton (Texas) Hebron, Wise spoke with Coach Brian Brazil about committing to Arkansas.
“Once he started playing that year, he didn't even want to entertain another other offers,” Brazil said. “He pretty much decided Arkansas was the place for him. He had a great senior year for us, and there were other people interested.”
Wise, who was listed at 235 pounds in high school, now stands 6 feet 5 inches tall and weighs 271. He had an outstanding senior season with 113 tackles, 12 tackles for loss, 10 sacks, 2 forced fumbles, 2 quarterback hurries and 1 blocked field goal.
He picked the Razorbacks over scholarship offers from Arizona, Vanderbilt, Purdue, Wake Forest and others. Several schools were cautious of offering Wise after having foot surgery.
“Part of it was his junior year he was recovering from surgery in the offseason, so he had a little bit of a slower start his junior year,” Brazil said. “He was always a great talent. He was starter on varsity as a sophomore.
Wise, who recorded 45 tackles, 7 sacks and 1 forced fumble as a junior, was rated a 3-star prospect by ESPN for the 2012 class.
“His senior year he was the MVP of our district ,” Brazil said. “We weren’t the district champions, but he was the hands-down winner for the Defensive Player of the Year award. That tells you what everybody thought of him.”
He led the SEC in sacks during conference play with 8. He’s on the watch list of several postseason honors, including the Chuck Bednarik, Bronko Nagurski and Ted Hendricks awards while also being mentioned on several All SEC preseason teams.
His father was a 1988 ninth-round draft pick of the Seattle Seahawks out of Jackson State as a defensive lineman and played in the NFL and CFL for four years.
Brazil was recruited by former Arkansas Coach Lou Holtz before going on to play at TCU. He and the elder Wise later discovered they crossed paths in the NFL.
“When I was in camp with the Houston Oilers, he was in camp with the Seattle Seahawks,” Brazil said. “We figured out we might have gone against each other because we scrimmaged against each other in Tacoma, Wash.”
Wise was raised right, and that is reflected in all parts of his life, including work ethic.
“His mother and father are just really good people, and they really stressed the work ethic and the things you need to do and respect,” Brazil said. “Because of that, Deatrich has always had a strong, strong work ethic.”
While he knows how to take care of business on the field and was recently named one of four team captains, Wise is also known to be one of the more outgoing players on the team.
“It’s funny; it seems like anytime I see an Arkansas video on Twitter, he’s in there somewhere being the clown,” Brazil said. “His dad is a really charismatic guy. He was never ever a me guy, or a cocky guy or anything like that, but he always had a good time.”
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