UA Basketball Recruiting Update

Hawgs Illustrated's Dudley E. Dawson talks with and gets the latest on UA basketball prospects RouSean Cromwell, Jovan Adams, Devan Downey, Clarence Sanders, Denis Clemente, Marcus Walker, Cyrus McGowan and Jeremy Mayfield.

While he has yet to figure out where he will play his college basketball, Memphis big man RouSean Cromwell does know where he will spend his senior year of high school.

It's not going to be at Memphis Fairley, where the 6-10, 212-pound standout that Arkansas is very interested in has been a star on the court and in the classroom the last few years.

Instead he'll leave Thursday to finish up his prep education at IMG's The Basketball Academy in Bradenton, Fla., a place that specializes in athletic training and boasts many famous pro athletes among its alumni.

"IMG just presents me the best opportunity to better my skills and improve myself," Cromwell said. "It gives me a chance to better my body and my mind and just gives me a shot to be the best I can be. That's the only reason I am doing it, not for the publicity that comes with it, but just because I want to be all I can be."

Cromwell, who averaged 13 points, 12 rebounds and 7 blocks last season for Fairley, but his summer was short-circuited by a foot injury that caused him to miss most of the AAU season.

"I feel great now and feel really good about what I can get accomplished both at IMG and in college," Cromwell said. "I feel like I have a bright future on and off the court."

Many prospects profess to be as concerned about their academics as athletics, but there seems to be no doubting that with Cromwell, who has earned Fairley's grade point average award for athletes the past three years.

He sports a 4.425 on a four-point scale, the bonuses earned by taking honors course and excelling in those.

"With or without basketball, I want to have a future that is bright and I know that the way to do that is to put forth as much effort or more in the classroom than I do on the court," Cromwell said. "I have a great belief in myself and my ability to be a success as an adult."

Arkansas joins schools such as Stanford, Florida State, Tennessee, UConn, Miami and Illinois with a chance to still land Cromwell.

"Those schools are all such wonderful institutions that it has been tough deciding which ones to go visit," Cromwell said. "But I have every intention of visiting Arkansas. My father and I are trying to get things lined up now that I have decided that IMG is the place for me this year."

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Jovan "Wink" Adams, the 6-1, 190-pound point guard from Houston Gulf Shores who will officially visit Arkansas this weekend, admits that he has fallen in love with each school that he has visited so far - Oklahoma (unofficial) and UNLV (official).

"I have been surprised by how nice both schools and the people and the atmosphere has been," Adams said. "When you are there, it's hard not to love everything about that place."

That's why Oklahoma and UNLV were both leaders coming out of his visits to their places.

"Honestly, right now it's UNLV at the top because I have been there and have not been to Arkansas yet," Adams said. "When I get to Arkansas that may very well switch because I will have something to compare. It's probably going to be either Arkansas or UNLV and I will probably make my decision pretty soon."

Adams, who said he will most likely not make a scheduled trip to Oklahoma on Sept. 17-19, and his mother both visited UNLV and will both be in Fayetteville this weekend.

"She really liked what UNLV had to offer," Adams said. "She thinks it would be a good school for me if that's what I decide to do. But we want to see what Arkansas is about now. I know I love Arkansas' coaches and can't wait to see what it is like there."

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Devan Downey, the 5-10, 155-pound point guard from Chester, S.C., will likely end up at Arkansas, Tennessee, Miami or Cincinnati.

He's already been to Tennessee and also has plans to visit Arkansas (Sept. 10-12), Cincinnati (Sept. 17-19) and Miami, where he may end up this weekend to see the Hurricane's Monday night game with Florida State.

"That's kind of mixed up right now and I don't know if it is going to get all worked out, but that's the plan," Downey said. "I am talking to their coaches about it."

He had plans to go to Maryland, but the Terps actually called off that visit when they decided to redshirt a juco point guard they had signed.

"No, I am not going to go there," Downey said. "That would be wasting everybody's time so I'll just choose from these other schools."

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Also scheduled to be in Fayetteville for an official visit on the weekend of Sept. 10-12 is high-scoring guard Clarence Sanders (6-2, 175) of Okaloosa-Walton (Fla.) Community College, who is expected to visit Ole Miss this weekend.

Sanders averaged 30.8 points per game in his first 11 games last season before a wrist injury limited his time and effectiveness and cut his average back to 18.3 by season's end. He knocked down 84 3-points during the season.

"Obviously he can score the ball and knows how to put it in the hole," Okaloosa-Walton assistant Michael Curry said. "He can shoot it from deep, take you off the dribble, take it to the hole, has a good handle and is just a very good overall player."

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Two other players who might visit Arkansas on Sept. 10-12 are 6-9, 235-pound power forward Cyrus McGowan of Mississippi and 6-9, 230-pound Jeremy Mayfield of Fort Worth, Texas.

McGowan, visiting Georgia Tech this weekend, will officially visit either frontrunner Mississippi State or Arkansas that weekend while Mayfield, who will visit Arkansas officially in October, is considering making an unofficial to Fayetteville that weekend.

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Combo guards Denis Clemente (6-1, 160) of Miami and Marcus Walker (6-0, 170) of Kansas City O'Hara are both likely to visit Arkansas Sept. 24-26.

"I haven't set up any of visits yet, but that's the weekend I am talking with Arkansas about coming in," Walker said.

Clemente, the name that has been mentioned the longest with Arkansas recruiting, will take a home visit with Arkansas during that week and then make his official trek to Fayetteville.

He also plans to make visits to Miami, Ohio State, Cincinnati and South Florida.

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