Join us here at SEC Country for the “Trent’s Trough” notebook as Arkansas Razorbacks beat writer Trent Shadid provides the latest insight on all Hogs recruiting news.
With No. 22 Arkansas set to face No. 12 Mississippi on Saturday, this edition of Trent’s Trough will focus on past-and-present recruiting battles between the Hogs and Rebels.
Arkansas-Mississippi 2017 recruiting battles
Arkansas and Mississippi are contending to land several big-time recruits in the 2017 class. Some players already have announced their commitment while others remain undecided, with both programs very much in play.
Here’s a look at some of the top recruiting battles involving the Hogs and Rebels in the 2017 class:
- 4-star S Todd Harris: He listed Alabama, LSU and Mississippi as his top choices in August. However, the Razorbacks have continued to pursue the Plaquemine (La.) High School recruit. Harris recently told SEC Country’s Sam Spiegelman he has remained in regular contact with Arkansas’ coaching staff.
- 4-star DE Isaiah Buggs: The No. 2 overall junior college prospect in the class, Buggs has listed Alabama, Auburn, LSU and Mississippi as his top schools. That hasn’t stopped Arkansas from continuing to heavily recruit him. The Razorbacks are hopeful a strong finish to the season can get them back in contention for Buggs, but Ole Miss remains a more likely possibility.
- 4-star OL Chuck Filiaga: The 6-foot-7, 330-pound offensive lineman from Dallas-area powerhouse Aledo High School has both Arkansas and Ole Miss among his recently released top 10 schools. He visited Ole Miss last month and has previously said he’s still considering a trip to Fayetteville.
- 3-star DE Bryan Jones: The Hogs have continued to push for the Ole Miss commit despite Jones not wavering from the Rebels since announcing his pledge in May. Jones, from Madison Prep Academy (Baton Rouge, La.), has reportedly long- awaited an offer from LSU. Getting spurned by the Tigers is something Arkansas coaches, particularly wide receivers coach and New Orleans native Michael Smith, regularly use as a tool to land recruits. Expect the Razorbacks to continue their push, with the Rebels still in the lead.
- 3-star LB Josh Clarke: Arkansas was among the final five schools in contention for Clarke before he committed to Ole Miss in June. From Riverdale High School in New Orleans, Clarke had developed a relationship with Smith before choosing the Rebels. The Hogs have since moved on to recruiting other linebackers, while Clarke has remained firm with Ole Miss.
Arkansas-Mississippi 2016 recruiting scoreboard
Continuing to look at recruiting battles between Arkansas and Mississippi, here’s a glance at the competition between the two schools in the 2016 class:
By the numbers
- 1: 5-star prospect signed by Arkansas
- 3: 5-star prospects signed by Ole Miss
- 5: Arkansas signees with an offer from Ole Miss
- 6: Ole Miss signees with an offer from Arkansas
- 5: 4-star prospects signed by Arkansas
- 12: 4-star prospects signed by Ole Miss
- 23: The final class ranking for Arkansas
- 5: The final class ranking for Ole Miss
Most competitive signings
- 5-star DL McTelvin Agim (Ark.): A highly recruited prospect from Hope (Ark.) High School, Agim had Ole Miss among his last four choices before pledging to the Hogs. He’s already become a regular contributor on the interior defensive line at Arkansas in his first season.
- 4-star RB D’Vaughn Pennamon (Miss.): He committed to Ole Miss in June of 2015, yet still took an official visit to Arkansas in October of that season. The Hogs were out of contention in the end for the 4-star recruit from Manvel (Texas) High School, who eventually signed with the Rebels over Alabama and Texas A&M. Things worked out fine for Arkansas, which signed 4-star running back Devwah Whaley in the class.
- 3-star WR Jordan Jones (Ark.): The Smackover (Ark.) High School recruit remained firm in his commitment to the Hogs despite heavy interest from Alabama and Ole Miss after he’d announced his pledge.
- 3-star LB Donta Evans (Miss.): Arkansas was among Evans’ top five schools when he decided to commit to Ole Miss.
Recruiting in enemy territory
In 2016, both programs recruited in the other’s home state. Here’s a look at players each program landed last season from the home state of its SEC West rival.
- 2016 3-star TE Grayson Gunter (Ark.): From Madison (Miss.) Central High School south of Oxford, Gunter never received an offer from the Rebels. Ole Miss eventually signed a pair of 4-star tight ends in the class and Gunter opted to head to Arkansas, where he is considered by the coaching staff to have a bright future in a tight end friendly system.
- 2016 3-star OL Deion Malone (Ark.): Like Gunter, Malone came out of Mississippi in the 2016 class without an offer from Ole Miss. A native of Batesville (Miss.), Malone signed with the Hogs after two seasons at Northwest Mississippi Community College and has yet to make an impact in his junior season with the Hogs.
- 2016 K Justin Charette (Miss.): He made his way to Oxford as a preferred walk-on to the Rebels from Pulaski Academy (Little Rock, Ark.). Charette has yet to play this season.
All rankings are provided by the 247Sports composite unless otherwise noted.