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:
Florida RB hits it off with position coach
Jimmy Smith, an assistant coach with the University of Arkansas football team, speaks with members of the media Thursday, February 6, 2020, inside the Fred W. Smith Football Center on the campus in Fayetteville. Ten football assistants participated in the interview process. Check out nwaonline.com/200207Daily/ and nwadg.com/photos for a photo gallery.
The University of Arkansas is one of 22 schools which has offered scholarships to junior running back Jaylon Glover, and it appears it has a solid shot of landing him.
“They’re definitely one of my top schools,” Glover said. “Especially how they use their backs. I see it virtually (visit) but I see Arkansas’ facilities and stadium is beautiful The coaches always talk about how good the fans are up there.”
Glover, 5-9, 190 pounds, of Lakeland,(Fla.) Gibson also has scholarship offers from Florida State, Miami, South Carolina, South Florida, West Virginia, Kentucky, Georgia Tech and others.
The Hogs extended the offer in August, and since then he and running backs coach Jimmy Smith have hit it off.
“After that me and Coach Jimmy have been clicking from there,” he said.
Glover was a big fan of Netflix’s “Last Chance U” Season 3 that featured former Arkansas running back Rakeem Boyd and Independence (Kan.) Community College in Kansas.
“I was like that’s pretty cool that he ended up at Arkansas,” Glover said.
Smith has a lot of family and friends in Miami while his wife Quanisha is also from there. His connections to Florida is one of several reasons why he and Glover have a strong relationship.
“That’s my dawg,” Glover said. “He probably hits me up on a day-to-day basis. We don’t always talk football but he loves my game. It’s kind of cool especially because he’s from Florida and we can relate on some of the same things. He talks about my film and what I can get better at and what I’m good at. He’s real and I appreciate him for being real. Yeah, Coach Jimmy Smith is my guy.”
He traded texts with Coach Sam Pittman on Wednesday.
“He hit me, and he was like, ‘Wow’ the transformation from my sophomore to junior year, he definitely sees it,” Glover said.
Like other prospects, Glover is adjusting to recruiting without the chance to visit college campuses and meet coaches face-to-face because of the covid-19 pandemic. The NCAA has extended the dead period to April 15 and another extension is a possibility. With the limitations, Glover is focused on things he can control.
“Definitely one of the big things is knowing where I’m at on the board and be honest with the coaches but if you can start building relationships not just with the position coach or one or two guys on the staff but you can actually hold a conversation with the head coach that means a lot as well too,” Glover said.
Earlier in the week, he was named the state’s Class 6A Player of the Year and is a candidate for the Dairy Farmers award which recognizes the state’s top football player. National recruiting analyst Tom Lemming of CBS Sports Network rates him a 4-star prospect.
He rushed 161 times for 1.588 yards and 31 touchdowns which averages to a touchdown every 5.1 carries. He also had 10 catches for 155 yards and 3 touchdowns. Glover rushed for 1,592 yards and 14 touchdowns on 212 carries as a sophomore.
Glover is also an outstanding student who has a 4.2 grade-point average. He’s not sure what he wants to major in but wants to be involved in sports after football.
“I want to love my job, I don’t want to do something like, ‘Oh I got to go to work.’ ” Glover said.
Academics and and his comfort level with a school will play a role in his college decision.
“When it narrows down I just want to find somewhere I’m in love with the school,” said Glover, whose father Stanley is a middle-school math teacher. “It’s a business, so the coach that recruited me can be there today and be gone tomorrow, so I want to make sure if anything goes down, I’ll be in love with the school so I wont feel like I just went there for a coach.”
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