Weeks of speculation was brought to a sudden conclusion tonight when word filtered out: Arkansas' prodigal son, Springdale signal caller Mitch Mustain, was being restored to favorite son status.

The nation's No. 1 rated quarterback decided to keep his commitment two days after an in-home visit from Arkansas offensive staffers, which included his high school head coach Gus Malzahn, who was hired as the Razorbacks' offensive coordinator following Springdale's undefeated season and top five national ranking, and newly hired QB coach Alex Wood.

On Sunday, Mustain met with Malzahn again and informed the coach of his decision Monday afternoon, followed by a call to Arkansas head coach Houston Nutt later Monday evening.

"This time around, I've exhausted every option out there," Mitch Mustain told The Morning News of Northwest Arkansas reporter Kurt Voigt. "This time, I honestly feel better now than I did in August when I committed."

As late as a week ago Mustain was still discussing plans to take two official visits. Tennessee, Notre Dame and Alabama were the schools most often mentioned as options, but no visits were ever set, if even discussed.

There were drawbacks to each outside situation and there's question to just how hard Mustain was examining alternatives. When he mentioned Army as a possible West Point of interest, doubts further escalated about his true intent.

Now everyone in the Natural State can exhale, as the prize of the Class of 2006 is staying home where he will team with Malzahn in an attempt to recreate the type of success they achieved in high school. For sure, Mustain has the skills to fit into the spread offense Malzahn will install. The only question is whether he still wants to redshirt as a freshman. The Razorbacks have Casey Dick returning to the starting quarterback job he won as a freshman last fall.

Tennessee's QB attention turns to Arvelle Nelson of Cleveland, Ohio, and Nick Stephens of Flower Mound, Texas. The Vols may also investigate second tier options or simply go with the three scholarship signal callers they have on the roster. They may also look at in-house possibilities, like Sinclair Cannon, this spring.

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