In his weekly recruiting column, Dudley E. Dawson catches up with former Stanford commit and new University of Arkansas pledge Daunte Carr (6-3, 205), a very impressive student-athlete from Gainesville, Ga.
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Although he initially thought he would be lining up in the Pac 10 next season, new University of Arkansas football commit and Gainesville (GA) High standout Daunte Carr is excited how things have changed.
Instead of heading to Stanford, Carr (6-3, 205, 4.5) will be a Razorback and playing in the SEC next season after pledging to do so earlier this week.
“I am thrilled that I am going to be playing in the SEC – a place that has the best players, the best coaches and the best teams as evident by winning the last four national titles,” Carr said. “It’s going to be a great for me because my family and friends will be able to see me play and I will be playing against the best of the best.”
Carr, who took an official visit to Arkansas last weekend, could line up at either safety or linebacker for the Razorbacks.
He had 104 tackles, 3 interceptions and two forced fumbles for the Red Elephants.
“I am very versatile,” Carr said. “I will be playing linebacker if I get any bigger, but right now Arkansas plans for me to start out at safety and we will see what happens from there.”
He does bring some nice attributes to the table, including not believing he is a finished product.
“There is nothing that a young player can’t get better at so I am working at improving on everything,” Carr said.
“But I do think I am very good at changing directions, I have a 40 inch vertical jump and I also run a 4.5 in the 40-yard dash and a 4.1 shuttle,” Carr continued. “So once I get headed downhill to make a tackle, I get there pretty quick and I like to make something happen when I do.”
Gainesville head coach Bruce Miller thinks that the match between Carr and the Razorbacks is a good one.
“I think it’s a good fit for him,” Miller said Sunday. “It’s a chance for him to go and be a part of a great program and play in the SEC. I’m proud of him.”
Carr’s four high school teams combined to go 56-2 in his career with two state titles and another trip to the state championship game in three years at Buford.
He transferred to Gainesville for his senior season and the Red Elephants went 13-1 in a campaign that ended in the state title game.
“I feel very fortunate to have had that success, but that is all about how good the teams and not an individual thing,” Carr said. “It is all about the team.”
Carr and his family visited around “15 to 20” schools before deciding to commit to Stanford.
He chose the Cardinal over UCLA, North Carolina, North Carolina State, Michigan and Florida.
Recently he decided to de-commit from Stanford as he waited to here on his admission and pursue another situation.
Arkansas popped into the mix right after Christmas and offered a scholarship last Friday.
New Razorback defensive line coach Steve Caldwell left a message on Carr’s phone Friday morning. He got it around noon, found out he had an offer from Arkansas and was on a place a few hours later headed to Fayetteville.
“I actually didn’t know what to expect from Arkansas on my visit, but I was blown away with what they had to offer as a university and with their football program,” Carr said. “I think there is a great opportunity there for me both as a student and an athlete.
“I also think that I can learn a lot from head coach Bobby Petrino and the Arkansa coaching staff,” Carr said. “After meeting with them I am very, very impressed with them as a staff and what they are going to get accomplished at the University of Arkansas in the future.”
Carr made it clear he is coming to Arkansas for more than just what he might get accomplished on the field.
“I am very pleased that I will have the opportunity to have a double major at Arkansas beginning with sports medicine and that leading into Kinesiology,” Carr said. “It’s not just about the football with me.”
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Arkansas is scheduled to have a few recruits on campus this weekend, including a pair of Razorback commits fronm Oklahoma in wideout/defensive back Eric Bennett (5-11, 180) of Tulsa Booker T. Washington and linebacker Courtney Gaston (6-5, 225) of Fort Gibson.
Also expected in are defensive tackles Byran Jones (6-2, 300) of Junction City and Calvin Barnett (6-2, 310) of Booker T. Washington.
Two other players who might visit are Olive Branch (MS) offensive lineman Shon Coleman (6-7, 300) – who might come for a one-day visit on Thursday – and River Ridge (LA) John Curtis cornerback Jonathan McKnight (6-0, 170, 4.5).
Coleman is committed to Auburn and visiting Ole Miss this weekend while McKnight is down to Alabama, Arkansas and Arizona.