Arkansas’ affiliation with the SEC apparently helped the Razorbacks land a commitment from a Class of 2017 two-way star in the heart of Big 12 territory.
Oklahoma prospect Jordon Curtis from Jenks, Okla., a Tulsa suburb, announced his pledge to Arkansas on Friday morning via Twitter.
“He’s never told me anything specifically, so I’m only speculating, but I think it’s the allure of playing in the SEC,” Jenks’ special teams coordinator Carl Johnson said. “Just because the level of competition he’s going to see every week. I think he’s built up a pretty good relationship with coach (Michael) Smith and other assistants on the staff, so it’s definitely a combination of things. But I think the allure of the SEC is definitely one of the top reasons.”
Curtis, a 3-star prospect, rushed for 781 yards on 87 carries last season — an average of nine yards per carry — and scored 12 touchdowns. He added 24 tackles and two interceptions on defense for Jenks, which has won the past four state championships in Oklahoma’s largest classification.
Curtis confirmed in a text message to SEC Country he expects to play cornerback at Arkansas.
“I think he could play offense and defense at the D-I level, but personally I think he could be a really good corner,” Johnson said. “He has the size, the ball skills, the athleticism. I think Jordon has always loved carrying the ball, but he understands that he has a great opportunity as a corner to be an impact player there just as much as he would on offense.
“I feel like when he gets to Arkansas and he just concentrates on the defensive side of the ball that he is going to turn into just an outstanding man-to-man cover corner.”
According to 247Sports, the 6-foot-1, 180-pound Curtis holds offers from eight FBS schools — including Iowa State, Kansas State, Purdue and Texas Tech.
The composite rankings from 247Sports rank him as the No. 77 running back in the class and No. 18 overall prospect in Oklahoma.
“He’s a great kid, great student and comes from a great family,” Johnson said. “I know he’s really excited to be going to Arkansas. I texted him as soon as I found out and you could really feel the excitement come through the text.”
Later Friday, junior college tight end Jeremy Patton out of Arizona Western College also committed to Arkansas — giving the Razorbacks 12 commitments for their 2017 class.