Springing Forward

In his weekly recruiting column, Dudley E. Dawson catches up with University of Arkansas recruiting coordinator Tim Horton to see how the spring evaluation period went as new coaches hit new areas for the Razorbacks. This story is free and sponsored by the Arkansas Toyota Dealers. Click on the Arkansas Toyota banner.




No matter what type of business you are in, research, data acquisition and evaluation of that information are keys to success.

It's certainly the case in the big business known as college football and something that Bobby Petrino and his University of Arkansas staff are very adept at doing.

The Razorbacks just finished being out on the road for the allowed 4 weeks during a 6-week evaluation period that ran from April 15 until May 21.

"We basically left the day after the spring game and were on the road for the next four weeks straight," Arkansas recruiting coordinator Tim Horton said. "We watched a lot of spring practices, got to visit with coaches at schools, picked up some transcripts and were just able to make a good evaluation of the young men we were recruiting."

They have returned to the office this week and basically gone over what they have learned during the last four weeks.

"Basically what we do is spend about a half-day together each day going over each position," Horton said. "We take a look at everybody we are recruiting, every kid on the board at that position, watch video and go over every thing we can come up with about the prospect.

"That allows us to prioritize our prospects at each position," Horton added. "We know the young men we want to go after and get committed, we'll find out that we like some better than others and we also use that time to back off others who would be academic or character risks."

Arkansas had three new coaches on the road this spring.

Those were offensive line coach Chris Klenakis, wide receiver coach Kris Cinkovich and defensive ends coach Steve Caldwell.

"Coach K had Houston and also one thing we are doing much earlier this time is position recruiting so he spent time with all the top offensive line prospects," Horton said.

"Coach Cinkovich has the Panhandle of Florida and making sure to see all of the receivers around the country that we are interested in," Horton added.

"Coach Caldwell is covering the most ground when it comes to recruiting," Horton continued. "He is in Southeast Arkansas, is now working with Reggie Johnson in Georgia to give us two coaches there, the junior colleges and high schools in Mississippi since he recruited there while at Tennessee and even a part of Houston."

Arkansas, who has six early commitments and should hear something from the state's top two recruits in Brey Cook and Kiehl Frazier sooner than later, goes into 2011 class planning on signing a full class.

"I believe it will be a complete class," Horton said. "We are planning on signing 25 and every assistant is going to be happy because they all are going to get somebody.

"Just like last year, we really didn't sign a running back, but we will this year," Horton said. "We will get somebody at every position to help this football team."

The Razorbacks will have a three-day camp on June 6-8 and a one-day event on July 17.

"Our numbers are significantly up for both camps," Horton said. "Our July camp is going to be really strong. The reception we are getting from our out-of-state recruits is really strong and we are going to have a great deal of talent on hand. It's very exciting."







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