Deep Threat

In his weekly column, Dudley E. Dawson chats with Pulaski Academy wideout Cruz Williams, who got an offer from Arkansas last week to run his total to four. 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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One of the state's best wide receivers finally has an offer that he has been waiting on.

Cruz Williams (6-4, 190, 4.5), a 2008 prospect from Pulaski Academy, picked up an offer from the University of Arkansas last week to go along with ones he had previously from Tulsa, Oklahoma State and Mississippi State.

"Oh, man I knew I was going to get one from Arkansas sooner or later and when I finally did get it, I was just very excited about it," Williams said. "Like I have been telling you, I have grown up a Razorback fan so it's just great feeling to have one from them now. I love Arkansas."

Williams' offer means the Razorbacks have now offer four WR prospects in state this season in Warren's Greg Childs (6-4, 180, 4.5) and Jarious Wright (5-11, 175, 4.4), Williams and Central Arkansas' Christian's Joseph Adams (6-1, 180, 4.4), a close friend of the Pulaski Academy star.

Adams has six different offers – Arkansas, Oklahoma, Texas Tech, Georgia, Minnesota and Tulsa.

"Joe and I have been talking about going to the same school for a couple of years now and that would be Arkansas," Williams said. "That may be what we end up doing, but we are getting offers quickly now so we just going to see what happens. But Arkansas is at the top of our lists."

Williams is coming off a season in which he caught 57 passes for 1,158 yards and 18 touchdowns for Pulaksi Academy's prolific offense that averaged 47.2 point per game and 526 yards total offense per game.

"I had a good season and felt good about what we got down as a team, but I am really looking forward to getting better in the offseason and just having a great year as a senior," Williams said. "I want to get bigger and stronger and faster."

Those catches, yards and scores should all increase this season as Williams becomes the main man on a team that last season had Texas Tech quarterback signee Stefan Loucks, USC running back signee Broderick Green and Brian Langford, who is walking on at the University of Arkansas after catching an amazing 139 passes for 1,948 yards and 21 TDs.

"We're actually moving Cruz into Brian's position this next season and he is going to find a lot more passes coming his way – especially since we lost nearly 10,000 yards total offense between Stefan, who passed for over 5,000 yards; Broderick, who ran for over 2,000 and Brian, who had nearly 2,000 yards receiving," Kelly said. "He'll be a marked man this season, but we think he will rise to the challenge and have a really big year."

After a sophomore season in which he caught 21 passes for 308 yards and 5 TDs, Williams had his coming out party in the first game of his junior season.

In what ended up being a 57-47 win at Forrest City, Williams caught 5 passes for 165 yards and 3 touchdowns of 11, 52 and 71 yards.

"Cruz showed this season that he can get behind anybody deep," Kelly said. "He runs good routes, but if he was going to improve on anything I would say that it is running the shorter routes and making yardage after the catch on those shorter passes.

"He has great upside and potential," Kelly added. "Even as raw as he was last season, he averaged 21 yards per catch and showed how great a performer he can be in the games."

All four of the aforementioned wideouts will be on hand for the Shootout of the South 7-on-7 event June 15 and 16th and the Mighty Bluebird Soccer Fields in Little Rock.

Kelly is excited about the competition – teams from Arkansas, Texas and Oklahoma – that will challenge Williams.

"There is going to be at least 7 or 8 Division I defensive backs for him to go up against," Kelly said. "That's going to help make him the best he can be."

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