Razorback recruiting rewind

    11:22 PM, Feb 10, 2013   |    comments
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    FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KTHV) -- Less than a week after one of the busiest days in college football, coaching staffs across the nation have a chance to relax. While they're catching their breath, it's time to dig a little deeper into how the Razorbacks faired on National Signing Day.

    National Signing Day is one of the most anticipated days for high school seniors making a pledge as to where they'll play football at the next level. But for coaches, it can be quite stressful.

    "Obviously, [it's been] a neat couple weeks for my staff and [me]. I say a couple weeks, well now, it's been a couple months," says head football coach Bret Bielema.

    For the first year head hog, it was important he make a splash with some big names and it started right here in Arkansas.

    "There's a lot of good football in Arkansas and we're going to tap every resource we can. So to get Martrell [Spaight of North Little Rock] to flip from his commitment to Kansas State, to know that he had to do a little bit of extra work to go to Arkansas, was huge. [It] says a lot to me about what he's all about and what the state's all about," Bielema says.

    Back up on the hill, the excitement continues.

    "The three Fayetteville kids [are] just phenomenal football players. But [they're] just great kids, great kids to have on our program," Bielema adds.

    Among those three is quarterback Austin Allen, who hopes to make an immediate impact on the team.

    "I'm excited to get up there and compete against them and learn how to be an SEC quarterback," says future Hog Austin Allen.

    Bielema's staff hit up every corner of the state, which includes Red Wolves territory, in order to pick up another big name.

    "Korliss Marshall [is] the last one to jump in the boat. [We're] probably the most excited about him just because you watch his film and you really don't know where he's going to fit in best. Whether it's, we're going to start him off at safety, could be a wide receiver, returner. It's just going to be fun to see him get in our program and flourish," Bielema explains.

    "They scheduled a visit at the last minute. Which, you know, I was gonna go anyways because I've been wanting to be a Razorback all my life. It's just an honor," says future Hog Korliss Marshall.

    Perhaps the biggest names for the Hogs came from the Sunshine State like offensive tackle Denver Kirkland.

    "That's one of our most decorated players that we signed. Not that that means anything," says Bielema.

    Another big name, running back Alex Collins, made his decision to be a Razorabck on national TV only to have it second guessed by his mom the very next day.

    "My mom thought I should wait. It wasn't her grabbing the papers and necessarily running outside. It was more of her, protecting me, making sure I wanted to go to this school for the next four years of my life," Collins says.

    Coach Bielema understands.

    "I know this, a mother's long is strong and you don't ever want to get in between that. The one thing that you will see, and he kind of does look a little older as well, he's mature beyond his years," adds Bielema.

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