Suddenly University of Arkansas football commitments are breaking out all over.
Oklahoma City (Okla.) Putnam North offensive lineman Myron McKinney (6-4, 305, 4.9) became the fourth 2006 prospect to commit to Arkansas - and the third this week alone - when he pledged to the Razorbacks on Wednesday night.
"Yes, it is official I am going to be a Razorback and I couldn't be more excited about it," McKinney said. "I called (Arkansas head) Coach Houston Nutt and he said he was overwhelmed . He said I was the kind of player with the kind of personality, attitude and character that he was trying to recruit."
McKinney joins Pocahontas big man Jim Hart (6-7, 305, 5.3) - who he met at the UA Seniors Camp last weekend in Fayetteville, Carrollton (Texas) American Heritage Academy athlete Chip Gregory (6-3, 212, 4.45) and former Texarkana and current Trinity Valley (Texas) Community College defensive tackle Freddie Barnett (6-2, 300) as Razorback commitments.
McKinney made it clear he would love for Springdale quarterback Mitch Mustain to join the mix.
"I met Big Jim this weekend we really bonded and I was honored when he mentioned me in the articles on him committing as someone he would like to play alongside in college," McKinney said. "I know both of us would love to be blocking for Mitch - the nation's top quarterback - while he hopefully leads us to a national championship."
McKinney, who bench presses 385 pounds and squats an absolutely incredible 710, had offers from Missouri, Texas Tech, and Wyoming.
"I also was getting interest from just about every school in the Big 12, but I must tell you one thing," McKinney said. "I had never been to Fayetteville before last weekend, but when I got out of the car and saw that big stadium there was just a feeling that came over me like I was home and this was where I was going to be.
"I'm going to use the word unexpected," McKinney said. "I had no idea how great the stadium, the indoor facility and that gigantic weight room would be. It's amazing. There's been nothing better that I have seen. It doesn't matter who offers me from here on out - I'm a Razorback."
Putnam North head coach Bob Wilson said Arkansas is getting a big-time player with a world of potential in McKinney, who got an offer from the Razorbacks earlier this week.
"Think about this," Wilson said. "He was 6-foot-1 and weighed 197 when he finished the ninth grade. Then he just tore into the weights, hit a growth spurt and became a big old man. He has great feet and the stunning thing is that you look at him and doesn't look 305. he doesn't look fat. In fact, he looks as if he could put on more and be one of those 340 or 350 guys that go to the league. He's also a big, big hitter."
McKinney, whose team went 9-3 before losing in the state semifinals to Jenks last season and has four D-1 prospects coming back, says he had a little help from a higher being.
"People kept telling me Myron, ‘you've got a great frame, but you are just not strong enough' and I had enough of that," McKinney said. "So I just poured myself into weight lifting and prayed to God. He answered with a growth spurt and allowed me to do it with a pure body which is something I am very proud of. It's a beautiful thing."
o o o
Two Texas standouts are currently on the University of Arkansas campus on official visits.
They are Brookshire Royal tailback-cornerback Torian Wilkins (5-11, 185, 4.4) and Houston Yates quarterback-linebacker Orie Lemon (6-1, 224, 4.6), a standout who has been offered as an athlete by both Arkansas and Texas.
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