Star Arkansas soccer player joins women's basketball team

Arkansas' Bea Franklin (8) runs the ball, Sunday, August 28, 2022 during a soccer match at Razorback Field in Fayetteville.

FAYETTEVILLE — Bea Franklin, the 2023 SEC soccer midfielder of the year, has joined the Arkansas women’s basketball team.

Franklin led the Razorbacks’ soccer team in goals (9) assists (9) and points (27) this year as a graduate. She transferred to Arkansas from Notre Dame in 2021.

She was a combo guard on the Seattle Prep girls basketball team in 2018-19, when she was also the Gatorade Washington Girls Soccer Player of the Year. 

Franklin averaged 9.9 points, 4.6 rebounds, 4.1 assists and 1.5 steals per game in 2016-17. She lettered in basketball three times. 

Her high school basketball career overlapped with Mike Neighbors' time as head coach at Washington. Neighbors, who is now in his seventh year as Arkansas’ women’s basketball coach, coached the Huskies from 2013-17 and led Washington to a Final Four and Sweet 16 before coaching the Razorbacks.

“My Papa Neighbors always taught us to never miss an opportunity to surround ourselves with women who are also good humans,” Neighbors said in a statement. “Well, that’s exactly what adding Bea Franklin to our roster is all about.

“She’s a great human being and we already know she’s a winner on the pitch.”

Franklin is listed as 5-10 and a guard. No uniform number has been added to the official roster, yet. She wore No. 8 on the soccer team. 

“Bea is a world class winner,” Arkansas soccer coach Colby Hale said in a statement. “She has impacted our program in ways that far exceed her enormous on-field contributions."

The Razorbacks are scheduled to play at No. 15 Florida State on Thursday at 6 p.m. Central in the ACC-SEC Challenge.