Of the many things that Arkansas defensive line commit Hjalte Froholdt of Bradenton, Fla., IMG Academy, saw in his recent return visit to Fayetteville was a better football team.
In fact the Danish-born Froholdt (6-5, 290) got a chance to see the Razorbacks crush Nicholls 73-7 to end a 10-game winning streak.
“I feel like I saw a lot better football team, one that has better players, one that has better chemistry among the players and one that is moving in the right directions,” Froholdt said Tuesday night. “I can’t wait to get up there and be a part of the program and the student life.”
Froholdt, who chose Arkansas over Florida State, Michigan, Michigan State and Ohio State among others last December, has plans to arrive in January as a mid-term graduate and be able to go through off-season conditioning and spring practice.
“That’s my plan,” Froholdt said. “It turns out that transferring courses from Denmark to IMG went very well for me. I think it is because we have to take a lot of courses early on that are courses you need to graduate here.
“My counselors have me in position to graduate in December,” Froholdt added. “It’s hard, but worth it. I would love to come up and help Arkansas right away in any way I can and hopefully play as a freshman.
“But even if I don’t it will allow me to get to know my teammates, get use to campus life and get a start on my education,” Froholdt continued.
Froholdt, a 4-start prospect and one of the top 100 players in the country according to Scout.com, was excited about seeing Arkansas head coach Bret Bielema and new defensive coaches Rory Seggrest and Robb Smith.
“I really loved being around Coach Bielema and he is the biggest reason I chose Arkansas,” Froholdt said. “I believe in him and I believe in what he is doing with the program.
“I also really loved being around Coach Segrest and Coach Smith and getting to meet them because those are the guys I am going to being spending a lot of my time with when I get to Arkansas,” Froholdt added. “It’s clear they are some great coaches.”
He also got a chance to hang out with some fellow 2015 Razorback commits in Charleston quarterback Ty Storey, Fort Smith Northside defensive end Daytrieon Dean, Fayetteville tight end C.J. O'Grady and Texas prep center Zach Rogers.
“We are going to have a great recruiting class, some guys that can come in and make an impact right away,” Froholdt said. “We have some more we are going to add that are great players, too. We want to be the ones to help get us to the top.”
Froholdt came to the United States as a sophomore and made a name for himself at Warren Ohio’s Harding High School – vaulting into the national rankings as a consensus top 100 player.
He went back to Demark and played for a club team his junior season before settling on IMG Academy for his senior campaign.
“It’s great down here,” Froholdt said. “It’s a school that you can only go to if you are playing a sport and we have some of the best players in the country. I’m learning a lot and I am going to be a much better player for coming here.”
IMG is 2-1 this season so far and coming off a 62-36 win over Prestonwood Academy last Thursday in Dallas.
“I think we scored 10 touchdowns and the offense just couldn’t be stopped,” Froholdt said. “Our defense played pretty good, but we have got to be more consistent and not take plays off.”
Froholdt played defensive end as a sophomore, but finds himself sliding down the line at IMG.
“I have lined up at defensive end, defensive tackle and nose guard just depending on what defense we are running,” Froholdt said. “I think I am stronger and a better player, but am trying to learn every day to get better.”
He is doing so with an injured hand that caused him to miss the second game.
“The game that we lost I wasn’t there because I flew back to Demark to have my hand operated on,” Froholdt said. “Right now I have it in a cast and I am putting my right hand down instead of t left at the line of scrimmage.”
The game in Dallas allowed Froholdt and his older brother Lars (6-1, 310) to rent a car and visit Arkansas last weekend and also gave Lars a chance to see both Abilene Christian and Arkansas Tech.
“He got a chance to check out Abilene Christian and Arkansas Tech and we are just kind of waiting to see what kind of options he has,” Froholdt said. “We’d love to play together, but realize that might not work out.”
Some of the aforementioned schools have been trying to get the younger Froholdt to take an official visit.
But his only one scheduled is to Arkansas on Oct. 25 when the Razorbacks host UAB.
“I’m thinking it is going to be in late October when we have a bye,” Froholdt said. “I’m already looking forward to getting back up there.”
He was the youngest player ever selected for Danish National Team that played in the nine-team EFAF European Championships in Austria and finished sixth.
“It was a great honor and something that I’ll never forget,” Froholdt said. “It was a great experience and I got to play against a great level of competition.”
Scout.com national recruiting analyst Jamie Newberg recently spent time at IMG watching practice and a game.
“Froholdt is playing the defensive tackle position (three-technique) for the IMG defense,” Newberg said. “He’s a big body in the middle who shows the ability to move and make plays behind and down the line of scrimmage. Froholdt is strong and can hold his ground and take on blockers.
“There’s no question that his better days are in front of him as he continues to learn the position and the game,” Newberg added. “This is a big bodied kid with talent, natural strength and some athleticism.”
Froholdt Sees Improvement In Arkansas
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