Although his head was turned with flirtations from Alabama and Auburn in the last week, Demario Ambrose stepped to the microphone on Tuesday morning to say he would be signing with the University of Arkansas.
Ambrose (6-5, 250, 4.7), a coveted recruit for the Razorbacks, chose Arkansas over co-finalist Purdue in a press conference at his school after a recruiting process which saw him have 16 different offers.
"I feel like Arkansas is the perfect place for me," Ambrose said at the press conference. "They needed me and I feel like their coaches have shown me the most love. Throughout the whole recruiting process they were there before a lot of schools that came in late. I feel like it is the best place for me."
Davidson head coach Fred Riley said Arkansas, who had Razorback assistant Mike Markuson heading up Ambrose's recruiting, is getting quite the football player.
"Damario is really one whose best football is ahead of him," Riley said. "He's 6-5, 250 and just turned 17 years old. I think he'll be a 6-7, 300-pound kid who can run. He'll be a great football player."
Ambrose will join current Razorback wideout London Crawford as Davidson products on the Arkansas roster.
Davidson has several players going on to Division I schools again this season.
"We take a lot of pride in it," Ambrose says. "When we were freshmen that's what we stressed from ninth grade until now. We stress discipline and respect and we pride ourselves on that."
Riley said that Alabama head coach Nick Saban had great interest in Ambrose, but he has limited scholarships to hand out in his first recruiting class for the Crimson Tide.
"Damario wanted to go to Alabama and they got caught in a number's crunch in terms of overall scholarships and defensive line scholarships," Riley said. "They just couldn't do anything with him. It was one of those deals where they wanted him but couldn't do anything about it. "
Alabama's number crunch was obviously Arkansas' gain and nice addition for Arkansas defensive coordinator Reggie Herring.
"Arkansas is going to be a good fit for him," Riley said. "Reggie Herring in his scheme does a really good job with his pressure stuff. That's something Damario is familiar with. "
Riley said that one school recruiting Ambrose tried to play the race card against Arkansas, but the prospect saw through that.
"We had a school bring up Arkansas ' graduation rates of African-American students and Damario said ‘I'll just be one of the ones to raise it'. That was a good answer and that's what he will do."
Ambrose said he is coming ready to try and get on the field and is already talking as a Razorback.
"I feel like I can come in and play if I work hard," Ambrose says. "I believe in the next few years we can win a national championship."
Damario Ambrose at his press conference on Tuesday morning.
Arkansas nets Ambrose
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