Arkansas landed a strong commitment when Anthlon Bell came on board.
Bell Rings For Arkansas
Memphis (TN) Barlett shooting guard Anthlon Bell (6-3, 180) said Wednesday night that he will sign with head coach Mike Anderson's Arkansas program during the Nov. 9-16 signing period.
The Detroit-born Bell chose the Razorbacks over co-finalists UMass and Missouri and joins 6-5 small forward Michael Qualls of Shreveport (LA) Huntington as 2012 Arkansas commits.
"I just think about the recent history of great shooters that Coach Anderson has had in his programs, all in an up-tempo systems that is fun to play in and is very successful," Bell said. "I think it is just a great fit for me and I couldn't be happier about being a Razorback."
Birmingham (AL) Central Park small forward Jacorey Williams also committed to Arkansas late Wednesday night via twitter as did Bell.
Bell, who visited Arkansas along with Qualls during the Oct. 14-16 weekend of Prime Time at the Palace, averaged 25 points and 5 assists last season.
His YOMCA AAU coach Jevonte Holmes thinks highly of the young man.
"His range is anytime he crosses halfcourt," Holmes told the Commercial Appeal. "I feel confident in him shooting it from anywhere. I call him the black J.J. Redick."
He has already scored over 2,000 points in his high school career and is third on his school's all-time scoring list.
"I think my shooting ability just came naturally to me, but I have also worked hard on becoming the best shooter I can be," Bell said. "I feel like I am a complete player, but shooting is the biggest strength of my program."
Bell will join current Razorback sophomore and former Bluff City star Mardracus Wade as Memphis prep stars on the Arkansas roster.
The Razorbacks hope to add a third in Memphis Central power forward Jarnell Stokes (6-9, 245), Bell's AAU teammate.
Stokes is deciding between Arkansas, Memphis, Tennessee and Florida.
Arkansas' rise to college basketball's elite in the mid 1990s – a national title in 1994 and return to the championship game in 1995 – was fueled by Memphis players.
"Coach Anderson has talked to me a lot about how he loves the natural instincts that Memphis players have for the game and how he always wants to have them in his program," Bell said. "I don't know where Jarnell is going to go, but I'd love to have him up at Arkansas with us."
Bell had just three offers in the spring before blowing up on the AAU circuit and seeing a wave of attention coming his way.
"It was kind of slow at first with just those three offers, but then I ended up with 10 or so after the way I played this summer," Bell said. "That was great, but made the decision harder for me because there were so many great schools.
"I got it down to these three, made the visits to UMass and Arkansas and then decided I knew what I wanted to do," Bell added. "I think Arkansas fits me perfectly so I wanted to get this over with and concentrate on my senior season."
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