Welcome to SEC Country’s daily Arkansas Razorbacks recruiting notebook. In this edition, we discuss a defensive tackle commit ready to sign, an offensive line commit visiting elsewhere and more.
Emmit Gooden appears ready to help Arkansas turn things around
Arkansas fans poured out of Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium by the thousands Saturday during the third quarter of the Razorbacks’ 52-20 loss to Auburn.
The Hogs (2-5 overall, 0-4 in the SEC) were well on their way to getting blown out in the second half for a third consecutive game. It was understandable fans were ready to jump ship and give up on the 2017 season.
One of the few who remained seated until the end was Hogs 2018 defensive line commit Emmit Gooden. He appeared disappointed with the loss but not ready to give up on the Razorbacks. Instead, he appears focused on being part of the change that is longed for in Fayetteville next season.
Gooden is a 3-star recruit and the No. 14 overall junior college prospect in the class according to the 247Sports composite. He’s arguably the Hogs’ most important pledge in the class. They need a read-to-play defensive lineman to pair with McTelvin Agim and (most likely) Austin Capps in the starting lineup next season.
Much has been made about whether he’ll actually sign with the Razorbacks in December as expected. He’s continually put those rumors to rest by reaffirming his Arkansas commitment to SEC Country and other media outlets on several occasions over the past few months.
If Saturday is any indication, Gooden is definitely looking to stick it out with the Razorbacks.
The Hog Way 🐗 December ⏳ pic.twitter.com/Ov67u3hz1x
— TheRealEmmitG (@What_A_Star5) October 23, 2017
Report: OL commit Luke Jones takes trip to Notre Dame
Arkansas offensive line commit Luke Jones visited Notre Dame last Saturday, according to a report from 247Sports.
Before the visit, Jones described the trip to see Notre Dame take on Southern Cal as a family getaway. However, he did reveal he would also take a recruiting look at the school prior to the game. He is not believed to have an offer from the Fighting Irish, who defeated the Trojans, 49-14, in South Bend, Ind., on Saturday.
“Me and my Dad and brother go to a big game every year,” Jones told 247Sports. “Nothing really serious. More of a family trip up there. Going to do a little visit before the game.”
Jones, from Pulaski Academy in Little Rock, Ark., committed to Arkansas last June. He is a 3-star tackle recruit and the No. 4 overall prospect in the state for the 2018 class. He chose the Razorbacks over Arizona State, Missouri, Oregon and others.
Hogs looking to JUCO level for a center
Arkansas coach Bret Bielema announced Monday that senior center Frank Ragnow will miss the rest of the season with a high-ankle sprain. That development, obviously, will end his career with the Razorbacks.
So, what’s the future of the position for the Hogs? It’ll be junior Zach Rogers and senior Jake Raulerson for now.
But after this season, there may be a current junior college recruit in the mix for the starting job if all goes as Bielema would like. The fifth-year Arkansas coach said Monday the Hogs are actively recruiting some potential options at the junior college level to specifically play center next season.
Among the possibilities is Navarro College (Corsicana, Texas) 2-star center Nick Dennis. The Hogs began recruiting the Southern Miss commit in recent weeks. He pledged to the Golden Eagles in late September over New Mexico, North Texas and Troy. However, an offer from the Razorbacks would be his first from a Power 5 school and certainly test his commitment.
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