Hazen's Campbell Raring to Go

In his weekly recruting column for Hawgs Illustrated and The Morning News of Northwest Arkansas, Dudley E. Dawson talks to Hazen linebacker Nathan Campbell (6-2, 215, 4.6), who already has an offer from Mississippi State and may get one from Arkansas soon.

Hazen standout Nathan Campbell is raring to go and one more trip to the doctor should do it.

Campbell (6-2, 215, 4.6), one of the few prospects you will find that doubles as a quarterback and linebacker, is one of the state's best junior football prospects.

But his junior football season - albeit a successful one - was hampered by stretched ligaments in his ankle and he's just on the verge of being able to return to full workouts.

"I haven't been cleared yet, but I will be the next time I get back to the doctor and I'll be able to go through summer camps and workouts," Campbell said. "I had my surgery on February 10th. got them tightened and went through rehab. I've got my range of motion back and its getting stronger."

Campbell, who made both of the Arkansas' Junior Days, and Pocahontas offensive lineman Jim Hart (6-7, 305) could be two of the next names added to the list of in-state prospects to be offered by the University of Arkansas.

The Razorback coaches have been out on the road for the past two weeks, will be in the office this week, and back out for two more weeks of spring evaluations.

It wouldn't be surprising to see some more offers be extended this week - both in-state and out-of-state this week.

Arkansas is known to have already offered four Springdale players - quarterback Mitch Mustain (6-3, 200, 4.6), wideouts Damian Williams (6-2, 190, 4.4) and Andrew Norman (6-2, 190, 4.55) and offensive lineman Bartley Webb (6-7, 285) - as well as Wynne defensive tackle L.T. Walker (6-4, 285).

They also issued numerous out-of-state ones with those lists sure to grow in the near future, maybe as earlier as the next few days.

"We'll get back together this week, go over the players each coach had a chance to see and begin to work on bringing the recruiting picture more into focus," noted Arkansas recruiting coordinator Chris Vaughn of a picture that starts with some 5,000 names. "It's an on-going process."

Mississippi State has already jumped in with offers to both Campbell and Hart, who are expected to be in both Starkville and Fayetteville for summer camps.

Ironically Campbell's Mississippi State offer came in the mail the morning he was taking his second trip to Fayetteville.

"I really like Mississippi State and the campus and the coaches and the fact that they have gone ahead and offered," Campbell said. "I'm hoping that Arkansas does the same thing soon. I've got a good chance now to see both schools."

Campbell, who will play linebacker in college, had 110 tackles, three interceptions, four forced fumbles and three recoveries last season despite the injury while also accounting for over 1,200 yards in total offense.

"I think I really read the ball well and fly to it and play real physical when I get there," Campbell said. "I have real good speed and am able to get to the ball pretty quickly. I also have pretty good hands so if I can get my hands on the ball I usually am going to come away with it. I feel good about my coverage skills."

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...Current Mississippi State point guard Gary Ervin (5-11, 170) visited Arkansas this past weekend, but other than saying the visit was nice, he was not talking much about a possible transfer.

"I'm not going to have any comments to the media for now," Ervin said Sunday afternoon.

Ervin, who averaged 7.4 points and 4.7 assists (third best in the SEC) while starting 33 of 34 games for the Bulldogs this past season, said earlier he was considering Arkansas, UTEP, Rutgers, Seton Hall and Marquette.

Arkansas did sign Ryan McBride, a 6-6, 190-pound shooting guard from Monterey Peninsula College last Tuesday to join a recruiting haul that also includes 6-2 New Jersey point guard Sean McCurdy and 6-9, 235-pound Mississippi power forward Cyrus McGowan.

"One area we wanted to address for next year was three-point shooting and Ryan McBride's numbers were very impressive," Heath says. "We feel like he can give us a boost. He's also a good player in other areas such as passing, defense and rebounding."

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