One of the best things about coaching in Georgia the past season is knowing where some of that state's top talent is.
Clearly new University of Arkansas head coach Bobby Petrino and Razorback offensive coordinator Paul Petrino did just that.
The Petrinos offered Alpharetta (Ga.) Chattahoochee safety Elton Ford (6-0, 200, 4.47), the North Fulton County Player of the Year, a scholarship on Wednesday after a whirlwind courtship.
"Coach Paul Petrino called here on Tuesday and said they were interested in me and wanted to see a tape," Ford said. "So we got them one out, they watched it on Wednesday and said ‘we want you to be a Razorback.' I told them I was very interested in doing that."
Ford, who was a teammate this season of Razorback defensive end commit Justin Smith, is currently committed to North Carolina State.
"Yes, I took a visit to North Carolina State and committed to them this fall," Ford said. "But I am supposed to visit Arkansas on Jan. 25 and if it is like I think it is, then I would end up changing my commitment to Arkansas."
Ford had 107 tackles, 9 pass deflections and 4 interceptions this season for Chattahoochee while also rushing for 593 yards and five scores after transferring from Lithonia High.
That earned him the honor of being named the North Fulton County Player of the Year while Smith was also selected to the first team for head coach Terry Crowder, a University of Arkansas graduate and former Fayetteville High assistant coach.
"I just went out and did my thing," Ford said. "I led our team in tackles, interceptions, receptions. I had a really good year. My team was happy I was here this year and I was happy to be here."
Ford, who says he might also take a visit to North Carolina, said he loved playing alongside Smith this season.
"He's a dominant guy, just a beast I guess you could say," Ford said. "He's told me I need to come on up there with him."
Chattahoochee went 8-3 this season losing in the opening round of the state playoffs to Grayson.
"We had a good season and beat some teams that Chattahoochee had not ever beaten," Ford said. "We came out kind of sluggish in our last game and paid for it, but like I said it was a good year for the team and for myself and now we just look to the future."
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