Nolan's Quest

In his weekly recruiting column for Hawgs Illustrated and The Morning News of Northwest Arkansas, Dudley E. Dawson chats with Shiloh Christian offensive lineman Nolan Hankins (6-7, 330). Hankins is one of several players that Arkansas has either signed or is in the process of recruiting that are using a new personal training facility to hopefully gain an edge.

Shiloh Christian offensive lineman Nolan Hankins is one of the biggest and best high school football players in Arkansas, but he actually hopes people will be seeing less of him in the near future.

Hankins (6-7, 330) is just one of a bevy of talented in-state offensive lineman prospects in the 2006 class and is one of the numerous local prospects working with Arkansas Sports Training and on his own to improve his stock and get in better shape.

"I weigh about 330 right now, but by the end of the summer I intend to be at 305," said Hankins, who had been over 340. "I'm working hard to get there by running five days a week, attending a speed training camp run by Aaron Leach two days a week, lifting four days a week, eating right and drinking a lot of water."

Hankins, who already has scholarship offers from Maryland, Tulsa, Baylor and Arkansas State. He is also drawing interest from Arkansas, Auburn, Georgia Tech, LSU, Michigan and SMU.

Razorback coaches Houston Nutt, Gus Malzahn and Alex Wood were on hand Friday morning to watch Hankins and other Shiloh players such as wideout Crosby Tuck and quarterback Matt Simpson work out and then Arkansas offensive line coach Mike Markson was on hand to see him in the team's regular spring practice on Friday afternoon.

"The workout Friday morning was before school and was one where our quarterbacks were throwing to our receivers more than anything else," Hankins said. "I just tried to show the Arkansas coaches how much better I am moving around now and hope they like what they saw."

Hankins credits his time at Arkansas Sports Training - a workout center in Springdale where future Razorbacks Mitch Mustain, Damian Williams, Andrew Norman and Ben Cleveland along with many other underclassman are going and personal training - to improving his conditioning..

"I think it has helped me so much," Hankins said. "The weight is coming off and I am in the best shape of my life. My conditioning is so much better. I have not been anywhere near as tired going through this spring practice as I was last year's. It's a great, great feeling to feel like this and it is only going to get better."

Hankins does not have an offer from the Razorback staff yet, but hopes one is forthcoming.

"I am very interested in Arkansas and Coach Markuson has told me that they are interested in me, Hankins said. "They said they are going to be evaluating me at camp this summer and maybe into the season."

Shiloh will finish up its spring practice with workouts on Wednesday and Friday.

"It's got really well for us so far and I think we are going to have a great team next season," Hankins said. "We are all putting in the work right now to get better."

Hankins, who bench presses 305 right now and squats over 400, will attend camps at Arkansas and Auburn and maybe one other as well as attending a team camp at Missouri State.

He has already been on the campuses of Arkansas, Georgia Tech, Georgia and SMU this spring, attending some spring practice in Fayetteville and going to the UA's second Junior Day on April 15.

"They all had very nice facilities and campuses, but I think Arkansas ranks with the best of them," Hankins said. "They take a backseat to no one when it comes to the facilities and their overall program."

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Tidbits:

...UA head coach Houston Nutt and assistants Gus Malzahn and Alex Wood had a busy Friday together. They started their day at Shiloh, then moved on to Morrilton to see prospects Josh Trezvant and Freddy Burton and then finished up their day at Fort Smith Northside.

Among the Northside standouts the Razorback staff got to see were quarterback Kodi Burns, senionr-to-be offensive lineman Paul Henry and Alex Birton and junior-to-be Austin Eoff as well as defender Matt   Jones, who did not practice because of injury.

...The UA staff also made trips last week to watch Pulaski Academy running back Broderick Green and quarterback Stefan Loucks in addition to Central Arkansas Christian tight end David Williams and many other in-state and out-of-state prospects.


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