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.
Memphis athlete likes UA dialogue
2020 athlete-receiver Darin Turner.
University of Arkansas Coach Chad Morris' efforts to recruit athlete-receiver Darin Turner haven't gone unnoticed.
"It feels good to get recruited by the head coach," Tuner said. "That means a lot."
Darin Turner highlights
Turner, 6-3, 215 pounds of Memphis Central, is a former LSU commitment with scholarship offers from Arkansas, Alabama, Auburn, Clemson, Miami, Louisville, Tennessee, Ole Miss, Mississippi State and others. Morris is the lone head coach to recruit Turner.
He visited the Hogs in March and made a return trip for the Kickoff Cookout on July 26. Turner has enjoyed talking to Morris while visiting Fayetteville along with communicating over the phone and through social media.
"That's unusual for a head coach to come and sit down with you face-to-face and talk," Turner said. "Just communicating through social media however he can and just keeping in touch, that's huge."
"He's the only head coach doing it. No other head coach is doing it."
Turner also communicates with receivers coach Justin Stepp, special assistant Sean Tuohy and others.
"Almost everybody on the staff is showing love," Turner said.
He feels like a priority because of his contact with Morris, Stepp, Tuohy and others.
"Communicating is the key," Turner said. "If you really want somebody, you'll communicate with them like you want 'em."
Turner spoke well of his latest trip to Fayetteville.
"The cookout went great, I met a lot of players, a lot of players that's supposed to be going there," Turner said. "I was able to catch up with some of the players that go there. The environment is just great. I love the fan base, love the coaching staff. Everything just went smooth."
ESPN rates Turner a 4-star prospect, the No. 16 receiver and No. 111 overall prospect in the nation in the 2020 class, while CBS Sports Network national recruiting analyst Tom Lemming rates Turner a 4-star plus prospect.
"This young man is tough to beat not only as a physical receiver, but he shows exceptional leaping ability, timing and anticipation," Lemming said. "He's one of the more physical receivers in the Memphis area. I can't say enough good things about this young man and his potential."
Turner, who pledged to LSU in the spring of 2018, reopened his recruitment March 14. He was teammates with Arkansas freshman receiver Shamar Nash and defensive lineman Eric Gregory at Memphis Central before the two left to play their senior years at IMG Academy in Florida.
"I got to hang out with them a lot, we caught up a lot," said Turner of his latest trip to Arkansas.
Nash escorted Turner on his visit.
"He kind of like chauffeured me around," Turner said. "Showed me where I would be taking classes if I come."
Turner said Nash was working on him to be a Hog while also giving him advice about college.
"He was trying to get me [on board], but at the same time, he's like a brother, he wasn't telling me what I wanted to hear, but was telling me what I needed to hear to get me prepared for college in general," Turner said.
Nash emphasized taking care of business on the field and in the classroom.
"You have to come in and do what you have to do," Turner said. "Stay on top of your grades and everything will flow smooth. Your grades carry onto the field. Just like how you have to perform on the field, you have to perform off the field as well."
Turner plans to take some official visits after his season is completed.
"Hopefully, I want to go on an official visit to Miami," he said. "I want to take an official visit down to Alabama, and I know for sure will be taking an official to Arkansas."
Email Richard Davenportat email@example.com
Sports on 08/16/2019
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