Arkansas could be turning to an old friend for a new player.
Eastern Oklahoma State shooting guard DeVaughn Purcell (6-4, 180) has emerged as a possible spring signee for Arkansas after a season in which he is averaging 21 points per game and shooting nearly 60 percent from the field and 44 percent from beyond the 3-point arc.
Purcell is coached by former Arkansas assistant Scott Edgar, who was one of the Nolan Richardson's assistants along with current Razorback head coach Mike Anderson back in the day.
"He is pretty good," Edgar said. "The number one thing is that he is an SEC athlete. He is 6-4 and can score in a variety of ways, He has gotten stronger and has grown in size since he has been here and has turned into a great player for us."
He will lead Eastern Oklahoma against Connors State – which features another Razorback recruiting target in 6-8, 220-pound Willie Atwood – Monday at 8 p.m in Warner, Okla.
Purcell, who is 26-of-59 from 3-point range this season, had 24 points, 11 rebounds and 4 assists Thursday night in an 86-75 loss to Western Oklahoma State in a with Arkansas assistant T.J. Cleveland looking on.
He had scored 30 and 29 points in his previous two games and had a season high of 40 points earlier this season while shooting 59 percent from the field, 44 percent from 3-point range and 72 percent from the free throw line during the season.
"You have to remember that I platoon five guys for five guys until someone gets in foul trouble so he is putting up those stats in 25 minuters or so," Edgar said. "He has really improved his shot and just has a nice touch and feel for the game."
Purcell, who played his prep ball in Orlando, Fla., currently has offers from Ole Miss, TCU, Western Kentucky and Middle Tennessee State.
"He thought about signing in the early period, but I told him that he would likely have better options if he waited until the spring," Edgar said. "As you know, coaches get frustrated with their players during the season and see where they have to get better at and then go after those guys.
"He is a 2 guard that is now high on a lot of people's lists," Edgar said. "It's like I told him, things are just getting started for you now. There are SEC and Big 12 schools starting to come in here now and things are only going to heat up for him."
Purcell has one other thing going for him.
"This is the first year that you have to have a 2.5 to get out of junior college and move on and he's got that taken care of as he is a very smart guy," Edgar said. "So he'll be at a place in June and ready to make an impact without coaches having to worry about him taking classes this summer. That new rule is going to get some guys, but not him."
Arkansas Eyes Shooting Guard
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