Arkansas is planning to take advantage of an NCAA rule that will allow its mid-term additions to practice with the Razorbacks during on-campus bowl work.
Bret Bielema talked about that intention during Tuesday’s Advocare Texas Bowl conference featuring the Arkansas coach and Longhorns’ head coach Charlie Strong.
“We actually have six kids that will join our program as early grads in January,” Bielema said. “When they sign an FAA (Financial-Aid) agreement, those kids can get done with their high school classes and after we’re done with our last day of classes on Dec. 19 - we are going to leave on the 26th - so we’ve got a five-day window where we can work with five high school kids.
“That will be a jump start to spring ball, which is huge for us,” Bielema added. “Anything the NCAA says we can do, we’ll do. Even if we’ve got to use some AdvoCare to spark it up, we’ll get those guys rolling around.”
Charleston quarterback Ty Storey (6-3, 215) and Dumas tight end Will Gragg (6-4, 245) - who is set to sign his FAA on Friday on the same day that he begins his official visit - and and injured Carrollton, Texas, center Zach Rogers (6-3, 300) have confirmed their intention to practice with Arkansas.
"I'm excited," Storey said. "It will be a cool experience. It is something that we talked about when I signed the Financial-Aid Agreement, a new NCAA rule that allows us to do this. I'm really happy about the opportunity."
Storey will do quickly after trying to lead his team to a second straight Class 3A state championship and back-to-back perfect seasons when the Tigers take on Smackover and 2016 Arkansas wide receiver commit Jordan Jones (6-2, 180).
"I'm really just worried right now about winning this game on Friday and getting another state championship," Storey said.
Rogers injured his knee early in his senior season after suffering a season-ending injury during preseason practice his junior year.
"I have my second surgery on Thursday and that should allow me to start doing more," Rogers said.
Bradenton, Fla., IMG Academy Hjalte Froholdt (6-5, 295) says he will not be able to practice with the Hogs because he will be home in January.
Other possibilities include Jacksonville, Fla., University offensive lineman Josh Allen (6-3, 305) - a 2014 North Carolina signee who sit out this semester - as well Fort Smith Northside defensive end Daytrieon Dean (6-3, 260).
If New Smyrna Beach, Fla., offensive lineman Jalen Merrick (6-5, 305) chooses Arkansas, he would be able to do so as well as he is a mid-term graduate.
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