Richard Davenport covers recruiting for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. He appears weekly on The Red Zone w/ JB on 92.1 FM Fayetteville, The Morning Rush w/ Tye & Tommy on 95.3 FM in Fort Smith; 96.3 FM in Hot Springs; 104.3 FM in Harrison/Mountain Home, 99.5 FM in Fayetteville and The Zone w/ Justin & Wess on 103.7 FM in Little Rock.
The Recruiting Guy:
4-star O-lineman Westphal blown away by visit
2024 4-star offensive lineman Fletcher Westphal with Arkansas offensive line coach Cody Kennedy (left), Sam Pittman and Westphal's mother.
Four-star sophomore offensive lineman Fletcher Westphal made his way to Fayetteville for his first look at the Razorbacks and was blown away.
“Kind of blew me away. You know, you’re in Arkansas and my first time being in the state and at home in Virginia you think, ‘Oh, Arkansas,’" said Westphal, who made the trip with his mother. "'What’s there to do here?' And then you get here. There’s everything.
"They have brand new facilities, you have a coaching staff most schools would probably dream of and you have a great town to surround it.”
Westphal, 6-8, 325 pounds, of Leesburg (Va.) Tuscarora, has accumulated 13 scholarship offers from schools such as Georgia, Penn State, Wisconsin, North Carolina, Virginia, Virginia Tech and Maryland.
He is likely to see an offer from Arkansas come his way in the near future. Westphal said watching practice was the best part of the trip.
“Although it was a little windy out today,” Westphal said. “You get to see coaches work. That’s kind of the main reason why we picked today.”
Westphal said the trip help Arkansas’ chances with him.
“They’re definitely on the list,” he said. “They’re definitely on the good list.”
On3.com rates Westphal as a 4-star prospect, the No. 15 offensive tackle and No. 202 overall recruit in the nation for the 2024 class. Westphal is the No. 4 prospect in Virginia in his class.
He enjoyed getting to know offensive line coach Cody Kennedy.
“Very genuine, tells it how it is,” Westphal said. “Not much more you can say. I was talking with some of the players and they said the same exact thing. They’re like, 'Great coach. If you’re doing something wrong, he'll tell you, and if you’re doing something good, he’ll tell you you’re doing it good, too.'”
Westphal noticed a flag flying near the track facility indicating 47 national championships while watching practice.
“I never really knew Arkansas…I knew they were good in basketball, but I never really knew they were like pretty good at every other sport as well,” he said.
A return trip to Fayetteville is likely.
“Absolutely, as long as I can make it down here,” he said.
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