Perry Intrigued by Arkansas' Turnaround

Whitehaven (Memphis) High three-star defensive tackle Michael Perry is intrigued by Arkansas' resurgence under head coach Bret Bielema.

Arkansas’ resurgence under head coach Bret Bielema has caught the eye of Michael Perry.

The three-star defensive tackle at Whitehaven (Memphis) High doesn’t have an offer from the Razorbacks, but he is keeping in touch with them and thinks an offer is just around the corner.

“I know before (Bielema) got there, it was pretty rough,” Perry said. “Arkansas wasn’t on my list at all. But Bielema has been a cool guy and is bringing back the old Arkansas tradition.”

Among Perry’s 12 offers are three SEC schools – Missouri, Ole Miss and Tennessee – but that number could double soon. Kentucky and Vanderbilt, as well as Arkansas, are close to offering.

However, conference affiliation and name recognition will not play a factor into Perry’s decision.

“It’s not about the name of the school,” Perry said. “It’s about what the school can do for me. It’s all about the defensive coaches and building a relationship with them.”

His main recruiter at Arkansas has been defensive line coach Rory Segrest. Perry said he is impressed with his NFL pedigree, as he spent time as an assistant coach with the Philadelphia Eagles.

They have also talked about the Razorbacks’ recent success with defensive linemen, which includes defensive ends Chris Smith and Trey Flowers and defensive tackle Robert Thomas.

The name Perry has brought up the most, though, is Darius Philon, who decided to forgo his final two years of eligibility and enter the 2015 NFL Draft.

He particularly compares his size (6-1.5, 315) to that of the former Arkansas standout, who measured 6-foot-1 and 298 pounds at the NFL Combine.

“I look up to Philon,” Perry said. “We’re about the same size. If he can do it at those measurements, I feel like I could come in and do that, too.”

Over the past week, Perry has visited Memphis, Ole Miss and Tennessee. He said he hopes to make it to Fayetteville for a spring practice or the spring game, but if he can’t, he definitely plans to come this summer.

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