Electrifying Watts

In his weekly recruiting column, Dudley E. Dawson writes about Bearden standout Dewayne Watts (6-1, 178, 4.51) and several other 2008 prospects expected to attend an Arkansas Junior Day this Saturday. This story is sponsored by the Arkansas Toyota Dealers. It's free and so is a special offer to attend a Razorback event on the Arkansas Toyota Dealers website. Click on a banner for details.

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Those in South Arkansas know that Bearden's Dewayne Watts is a great athlete and outstanding football player who can play all over the field.

The rest of the state – and many around the country – will no doubt soon find that out as well.

Watts (6-1, 178, 4.51), who accounted for 49 touchdowns and 3,000 yards total offense this season for a 12-2 squad, is among at least 20 or so in-state juniors that will be in Fayetteville on Saturday for the first of two University of Arkansas Junior Days.

"I have gotten a couple of letter from the Razorbacks and I am very interested in Arkansas – very interested," Watts said. "Kansas State sent our whole team a letter and let me know they were looking at me," Watts said. "LSU and Auburn are also playing attention to me."

Watts, who played quarterback this past season but will be a running back or safety in college, was one of the standouts at the FCA Combine in January where he put down a 4.51 40-yard dash – one of the three fastest times of the event.

"I want to get my speed down to at least a 4.4," said Watts, who has plans to attend a Razorback football camp this summer. "Right now I am running a 4.51. My goal is to get stronger, bigger and faster."

Watts and the others expected Saturday to tour the campus and facilities and see the Razorbacks' basketball game with Tennessee, will be followed in by a much larger group on April 14th - a date that coincides with end of spring practice and the Red-White game.

"We are just having those in that we have already evaluated and then we will have a lot more in that second Junior Day," notes UA assistant coach Chris Vaughn, who has served as director on campus recruiting this past season. "As I have said so many times, it is about developing those relationships early on."

Included in the list of invitees include five 2008 players that Arkansas has already offered in UA offensive line commit Matt Hall (6-10, 320) of Dardanelle, the Camden Fairview pair of running back DeAnthony Curtis (5-11, 210, 4.41) and defensive end Lavunce Askew (6-3, 265, 4.8) and the Warren wideout duo of Greg Childs (6-4, 190, 4.4) and Jarious Wright (5-10, 175, 4.4).

Reports are that Camden Fairview quarterback/pitcher Jim Youngblood (6-2, 212), who will also be on hand and already has a Razorback baseball offer, is on the verge of being the third prospect from his school to get a UA football offer.

Some other top prospects apparently invited include Greenwood quarterback Tyler Wilson (6-3, 185), Texarkana running back Dennis Johnson (5-8, 180, 4.4), Little Rock Central running back Tim Dunn (6-1, 190, 4.4) and Nashville tailback DeShawn Scroggins (5-10, 185, 4.5).

The 2008 wideout class in Arkansas is outstanding with Childs and Wright, North Little Rock;s Joseph Adams (6-1, 180, 4.39), Pulaski Academy's Cruz Williams (6-4, 180, 4.4), Atkins wideout Terrence Bobo (66-0, 175, 4.4) and Van Buren's Taylor Stockemer (6-4, 190, 4.53) among those invited to Saturday's event.

The known offensive line invitees are Hall, Fort Smith Northside's Austin Eoff (6-4, 305), Springdale Har-Ber's Bryant Newell (6-7, 295) and Bentonville's Tyler Barnes (6-4, 290).

Watts ran for 29 touchdowns and passed for 20 more while leading Bearden to the state championship game before falling to Jessieville 28-12.

"I think I could always do better as an individual, but I do think also that I had a great season," Watts said. "We almost got it (a state title)."

The Bears only two losses of the season under first-year head coach Mike Cox were to Junction City and Jessieville.

"We had a good year," Watts said. "We had a new head coach come in and bring a new offense and we ran it to perfection. It was a great year."

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