Right after Pottsville offensive lineman Jeremy Ward committed to Arkansas, other schools came running.
Ole Miss had already offered, LSU and Oklahoma State soon put ones on the table and Alabama moved to the edge and told Ward (6-4, 280) one was coming.
Too little, too late.
"Ole Miss offered me and then about a week after Arkansas did and that was good enough for me," Ward said. "I was about to pass out just to get those two…but then LSU offered, Alabama sent me a handwritten letter saying they were going to offer, Oklahoma State offered.
"But they all know I am committed to Arkansas," Ward said. "That's not going to change."
Ward is the only one of the Razorbacks' six 2012 commits at this camp with the others set to come to the one-day camp on July 16.
He is not about to coast during the three-day camp or think he has it made.
"You just can't stop working, you can never think just because you are committed that you have it made," Ward said. "You have got to show these coaches what kind of work ethic you have and want you can do. To me you have to work even harder and perform for them."
Just out of school, Ward is taking time off and has launched into a mental and physical training regimen to get him ready for next season.
"I have been getting up at 7:30 each morning and going to ACT prep until noon and then hitting the gym," Ward said. "The one thing I know is that you can't quit working because there is always somebody out there that is and trying to get better than you."
Pottsville is not going to be an team that airs it out much and prefers to attack via the ground.
"We are a straight Dead-T team and we are going to run at you and hit you in the mouth and maybe pass twice a game," Ward said. "We will be a lot better than we were last year."
Ward's commitment to Arkansas is bringing the town of Pottsville a lot of publicity that it would not normally get.
He knows how much the people there have helped him get to where he is right now and where he is headed.
"I was at a friend's the other night and his dad said "who are you going to give credit for your success?' I thought about it for a minute and said ‘well, I sure am not going to take it all for myself. That would make me an idiot.'
"I am going to give it to all the teachers who told me to shut up in class, gave me all the tests I failed and all the tests I passed," Ward said. "I am going to give it to all the people in my life who pushed me. I have to think everybody around me."
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