Razorbacks, Pittman Out-Recruited for State's Best Players Again

No fence around Arkansas when it comes to recruiting anymore
Arkansas Razorbacks head coach Sam Pittman before the game between the Texas A&M Aggies and the Arkansas Razorbacks at AT&T Stadium.
Arkansas Razorbacks head coach Sam Pittman before the game between the Texas A&M Aggies and the Arkansas Razorbacks at AT&T Stadium. / Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. -- Football season has yet to arrive, but losing is a continual vibe for Arkansas this offseason.

Yet another 4-star prospect and former Razorbacks commitment has spurned the state for an SEC rival. What started as a bounce-back recruiting class has turned into a stroll of constant sorrow and pity.

Priority target and 4-star lineman Carius Curne announced his commitment to LSU Thursday over Arkansas and Missouri. Ranked just outside the Top 100 by 247sports rankings, Curne was committed to Arkansas for a brief period before reopening his recruitment less than a month later. The Razorbacks felt good about their chances of the Marion native jumping back aboard. However, Sam Pittman's former offensive line coach Brad Davis proved otherwise with the Tigers.

Curne is the top player in the state of Arkansas for the 2024 cycle just ahead of Razorbacks' quarterback commitment Grayson Wilson. Little Rock Parkview standout safety Omarion Robinson has been one of the more impressive athletes in-state since debuting with the Patriots as a freshman.

His recruitment has been hotly contested between Arkansas and Oklahoma with his commitment date looming June 29. If Arkansas somehow loses Robinson to the Sooners, that would make it the second straight cycle that the top two in-state players flee for conference rivals.

The 2025 class, at least in-state, is beginning to creep away from Arkansas coaches' fingertips. Curne's LSU commitment further solidifies proof of separation between the Razorbacks and local prospects' interest. According to Rivals, Arkansas only has one Top 5 recruit from the state in quarterback Grayson Wilson at No. 5.

Robinson at No. 1 is the only remaining player on the list Arkansas even has an outside chance of landing. The Hogs have already missed out on the other three to LSU, Oklahoma and Notre Dame.

Rivals ranking of the Class of 2025 Top 5 recruits in Arkansas.
Rivals ranking of the Class of 2025 Top 5 recruits in Arkansas shows the Razorbacks only have one player currently committed. / Rivals.com

Looking back to the 2024 cycle, Little Rock Christian quarterback Walker White was hardly made a priority by the Razorbacks under former offensive coordinator Kendal Briles. That decision hurt the team's chances of landing him. Instead, White chose Auburn and Hugh Freeze, a known quarterback developer.

Wide receiver Courtney Crutchfield was committed to Arkansas last spring. However, he chose to decommit minutes before the Razorbacks game against Florida, which ended in the Hogs' picking up it's first SEC victory of the season. Crutchfield ended up signing with Eli Drinkwitz and Missouri instead of recommitting, joining his high school teammate Austyn Dendy in Columbia.

Drinkwitz also landed another 4-star in Brian Huff from Valley View. The 6-foot-4, 225 pound linebacker earned an offer and visit from Arkansas, but hat wasn't enough as Missouri planted a seed much earlier than the Razorbacks, resulting in Huff remaining loyal to his first suitor.

Earle wide receiver Joseph McVay, another 4-star wideout the Razorbacks missed as the No. 4 prospect, chose Vanderbilt over Penn State, Texas A&M, South Carolina and Purdue. There was not even a whimper of attention from Arkansas.

An actual Razorbacks legacy in quarterback Drake Lindsey played his high school football around the corner from Razorback Stadium in Fayetteville. He was a lightly recruited, high 3-star prospect with a strong arm and decent mobility.

The 6-foot-5, 235 pound passer signed with Minnesota's P.J. Fleck after throwing for more than 7,500 yards, 89 touchdowns and only nine interceptions his final two years on The Hill. It's rare Arkansas high schools produce this many power conference prospects.

The Razorbacks have historically racked up on talent when its home soil produces this level of recruits. 2024 wasn't an outlier. It's a trend that needs to be quickly deflated before the Hogs' spiral out of control once again.


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Jacob Davis