FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Arkansas' recruiting is off to a good start as the beginning of the 2018 football season nears.
The Razorbacks will open the season on Saturday, Sept. 1, at 3 p.m. at Reynolds Razorback Stadium hosting Eastern Illinois. It will be Military Appreciation Day at Arkansas and also the first game in the stadium with the new North End Zone addition. The game will be televised on the SEC Network.
Arkansas is currently sitting with 18 commitments for the Class of 2019. The Razorbacks are ranked in the top 25 in the nation recruiting by most of the major recruiting services. That is some lofty recruiting for Chad Morris who was hired in December to replace Bret Bielema following a 4-8 season.
Even with the current success there's still questions to be answered in this class. Here's five questions about the Class of 2019 that still are to be answered.
1. Can Arkansas Keep Hudson Henry at Home? The youngest of three very talented brothers is being sought heavily by Morris, Barry Lunney Jr. and the Arkansas staff. Stanford and others are trying to land him as well. Henry had a banner junior season catching 72 passes for 984 yards and 10 touchdowns. His oldest brother, Hunter, won the Mackey Award as a junior at Arkansas. Hayden, his other brother, is a sophomore linebacker and nickel back on the current Razorbacks. Mark, their father, also played at Arkansas lettering four years. Some claim the youngest Henry is the most talented of the group. That is saying a lot if true. Whether he's the most talented of the Henry family or not, he's a great player. Here is to predicting the Hogs get Henry.
2. Can the Hogs Make a Sweep at Mansfield Legacy? Arkansas picked up a verbal pledge from Mansfield (Texas) Legacy defensive lineman Enoch Jackson on Aug. 3. He chose the Hogs over Clemson and Texas Tech. Now Arkansas' Mark Smith is trying to make it a complete sweep at the school. He is recruiting safety Jalen Catalon and defensive lineman Taurean Carter. Jackson made a plea on Twitter Thursday for the two to come with him to Fayetteville.
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Catalon is looking hard at Texas as well as some other schools. He holds over 20 offers including from schools such as Oklahoma, Alabama, TCU, Clemson and Ohio State among many others as well as the Hogs and Horns. He is a two-way standout for Legacy. On defense in 2017, Catalon had 101 tackles, three for loss, three pass breakups, four forced fumbles, four recovered ones and three interceptions. On offense, he accounted for 2,176 yards and 29 touchdowns from his quarterback position. Defensive lineman Taurean Carter gives Legacy a great one-two punch on the defensive line with Jackson. He has around 15 offers with Arkansas, Texas, TCU, Michigan State and maybe Texas high on his list. As a junior, Carter had 65 tackles, 16 for loss, eight sacks and one forced fumble. This, like Catalon, could come down to an Arkansas and Texas battle. Jackson, Catalon and Carter will all officially visit the Hogs on the Oct. 6 weekend when Alabama comes to Fayetteville. This is going to be hard to pull off the sweep, but the key could be Carter. If he joins Jackson in Fayetteville then it becomes much more likely that Catalon does as well. I still think Catalon is gonna be hard to pull away from the Longhorns.
3. Can Arkansas Get More Offensive Linemen? This is something they are going to have to do because currently they only have two committed. If one were betting right now the likely favorites to join Beaux Limmer and Joseph Stone in the class are Memphis (Tenn.) Whitehaven offensive guard Melvin McBride and Saddleback (Calif.) College offensive tackle Tim Anderson. If there's any way they can it would likely be good if Arkansas could add three more linemen to the class. I still think a dark horse in this is Jenks (Okla.) offensive tackle Brady Latham. He is 6-5, 290, and has offers that aren't from SEC and Big 12 schools, but the Hogs are searching for a tackle or two and he is one they could move on if he plays well this season. I obviously think the Hogs will get at least two more offensive linemen in this class. I still think they could offer another prospect or two if they find one they like. Both McBride and Anderson are slated to visit officially for the Tide game on Oct. 6. That is shaping up as a huge weekend for Arkansas.
4. Will the Razorbacks Sign More Than 22? My answer to this is yes if they get the right ones. They are currently only four away from that number and still actively recruiting several players. It's a must they get a minimum of two more offensive linemen then you have Henry so that is three there. That would only leave one more to get to 22 assuming they hold all their current commitments. If they got those three along with the two other players at Legacy that is 23 right there. So yes I definitely think if things fall right the Hogs will top 22 and I think that will happen.
5. Will They Sign a Surprise In-State Player in the 2019 Class? According to sources this could happen. It will depend, at least in part, how he plays this fall for his high school team. Scholarships are tight, but it looks like this could happen if he plays well. It's too early to make a definite prediction about this, but according to multiple sources don't rule it out. If the Hogs like what they see this fall they could offer and if they do most likely will get a commitment pretty soon afterward.
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