Memphis Whitehaven prep linebacker Tenarius Wright was actually born on the Arkansas side of the Mississippi River, but had never been to Fayetteville before Saturday afternoon.
Wright (6-2, 225, 4.7), who finally got to play this season on Friday night after being out with an injury, made the trip to see the University of Arkansas play Kentucky along with Whitehaven senior quarterback Garrick Jones (6-2, 175).
"When I first pulled up outside and saw how big the stadium was, I knew this was a big-time place," Wright said. "The indoor (workout) place was great and the weight room was also just amazing as was the highlight film that we got a chance to see. The coaches are real cool, too."
Arkansas is among five SEC schools that Wright is considering along with Ole Miss, Mississippi State, LSU and Alabama.
"I consider myself open, but I will say that after coming to Arkansas, I can certainly see myself playing here," Wright said.
He is doing his homework on all of the schools.
"I was looking in the book (program) about who was leaving and I know how Arkansas already has two linebackers committed," Wright said of Jelani Smith and a possible in Basmine Jones. "But I like competition and I am really thinking about coming to Arkansas."
Wright was really anxious to get out on the field last Friday after finally getting healed from a high ankle sprain.
He came back with a vengence with nine tackles and two sacks as Whitehaven downed Collierville 14-10 in a Region 8-5A contest.
"There was a fumble in there as well, but I don't know if I got credit for it," Wright said. "It felt really good to be back out there on the field making plays."
Jones was 5-of-6 passing for 125 yards with two touchdowns as the win moved Whitehaven to 4-1 on the season and was the first game in which Wright thought his squad showed its true colors.
"Last night was our first game with our whole team actually playing because we had some injuries to myself, one of our wide receivers that was in a car wreck, the other linebacker," Wright said. "We played so well last night against a team that no one had even scored on before and we beat them and made a statement."
Wright feels good about most of his game, but is working hard to shore up one area.
"The biggest thing I am working is my one-on-one pass coverage," Wright said. "I feel really good about stopping the run and I think that is the biggest thing a linebacker has to be ready to do. I am also pretty good in zone pass coverage, but need to get better at the one-on-one."
Jones is also being recruited by SEC schools such as Arkansas, Alabama along with others in Georgia Tech, Memphis and Middle Tennessee State.
"I really like what I have seen at Arkansas," Jones said. "Like he said, it is a big-time school with big-time facilities."
Jones says he feels confident about both his arm and feet.
"I can make plays with my feet and feel I am very elusive, but I also feel real good about my arm and how well I throw the deep ball," Jones said. "We'll just have to see how all this recruiting goes. I'm not in any hurry right now to make a decision."
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