Brotherly Love

After watching his brother Brandon earned MVP honors on Friday night at Reynolds Razorback Stadium, Freddie Barnett talks about his path back to the University of Arkansas.

There's very little doubt that the biggest smile in Reynolds Razorback Stadium on Friday night was on the face of a Barnett.

The only question was whether it was on the face of the little Barnett or the big one.

University of Arkansas tailback signee Brandon Barnett (5-9, 190, 4.4) scored three touchdowns to lead the West squad to a 28-13 win in the 2005 Arkansas High School Coaches Association All-Star Football Game.

Older brother and defensive tackle Freddie Barnett (6-2, 305) - who played in the 2004 All-Star game - was just beaming before, during and after the game.

"I am very proud of him," Barnett said. "I am just glad he came out here and showed what he can do and he knows he can get it done on the next level. He's a great player and he works so hard."

Freddie was part of the Razorbacks' 2004 recruiting class before detouring to Trinity Valley (Texas) Community College, where he had 51 tackles and six sacks in a first-team all-conference campaign.

He reaffirmed his commitment to Arkansas earlier this week and is doing his best to make sure he finishes up at at TVCC by December so he can go through 2006 spring practice with the Razorbacks.

"I'm taking courses during the first and second summer sessions and even taking some internet courses," Barnett said. "I just want to be on track. I have a burning desire to be there, go through spring practice and put myself in the best position to come in and play right away."

Brandon will likely go to either Hargrave Military Academy for a year or Butler County (Kan.) Community College for two seasons before rejoining his brother in a Razorback uniform.

Ironically Trinity Valley opens its 2005 season Aug. 27 on the road against Butler in El Dorado, Kan.

"I can't wait to get up here and play and then have Brandon here, too," Barnett said. "It's going to be like a dream come true. I just have to keep taking care of business so I can get to where I am supposed to be by the time I want to be there."

There had been some who thought the elder Barnett might look around after not getting into school the first time, but he says that was not the case.

"I love Arkansas and I wanted to stay close to home," Barnett said. "I signed and I have always been committed. It's a firm commitment, always has been, always will be."

After a 3-7 season in 2004, Barnett is looking forward to a much better 2005 campaign.

"I think we are going to be really good next year," Barnett said. "We had a whole freshman class playing last year that will all be back as a full sophomore class. We ought to be very, very good."

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