Who knows just how many there will be, but the University of Arkansas has now landed at least two prospects from the vaunted in-state 2011 hoops recruiting class.
Jonesboro Westside forward Hunter Mickelson (6-10, 195) went public with his commitment to the University of Arkansas and head coach John Pelphrey on Tuesday afternoon.
"I am 100 percent sure that I want to be a Razorback because of many things, but the one that stood out was the time that Coach Pelphrey and his staff put into my recruiting," Mickelson said. "Of all the schools that knocked on the door, they knocked first and loudest.
"I am excited about staying in state so my family can see me play and the tremendous support of of the Razorback fans will be fantastic," Mickelson added. "I am looking forward to competing in the SEC and for an NCAA Championship."
Mickelson, ranked as the 11th best power forward prospect in the country by Scout.com and the 60th-best prospect overall, joins Little Rock Parkview forward Aaron Ross (6-8, 225) in already pledging to sign with the Razorbacks.
He averaged 22 points, 15 rebounds and 8 blocks per game this past season while leading his team to the team to a Class 4A state title.
His dad Darien was pleased with his son's decision and lauded Pelphrey and the UA staff.
"I am so proud of Hunter and the hard work he has put in to achieve his dream of playing Division I basketball at the highest level," Darien Mickelson said. "Today's decision was the finalization of a family process over the past three years; we evaluated the offers made and made unofficial visits to three SEC schools.
"We could not imagine anyone putting more time and effort into the recruiting of a student athlete than John Pelphrey," the elder Mickelson added. " As a result, this is more than a basketball decision. Things like hard work, loyalty and trust are important to our family and we look forward to a lifetime relationship with the Razorbacks, Coach Pelphrey and his staff.
"We had hoped Hunter would choose a school where we could see him play the majority of his games. He is an Arkansas young man who has a great deal of pride in representing our state."
Mickelson has also been a standout for the AAU Arkansas Wings program since his seventh grade year and believes that allowed him to get scholarship offers.
"It (AAU) probably is 90 percent of the reason why," Mickelson said.
Mickelson chose Arkansas over Ole Miss, Florida, Georgia Tech, Baylor, Mississippi State and Oklahoma State.
"When I kind of saw that Coach P and the guys were really serious about it and were kind of downhome and I figured that since I was in state and all, I was thinking I might as well come to Arkansas," Mickelson said.
Mickelson said he is 100 percent committed to the Razorbacks and will let other teams know that.
"I will probably just tell you what I am telling these guys now, 'I have already decided where my home is going to be' and I will politely decline."
The Razorbacks have also offered 6-4 East Poinsett County guard Ky Madden, a teammate on the Arkansas Wings' 17-and-under AAU team.
All three of those in-state talents are ranked in the top 60 nationally with Madden pegged 37th and Ross 56th by Scout.com.
Arkansas is also known to be interested in 6-6 guard David Rivers of Little Rock Hall, 6-10 Hooper Vint of Van Buren and 6-5 Darion Griswold, a basketball and football star from Dumas.
Arkansas Lands Mickelson
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