Clay/Matt why are recruits surprised by our facilities?

you hear this all the time about how surprised they are about our faciities…seems like to me we need to send out a brochure highlighting everything so they will want to come…I know you want them to come on person but there might be some turn us down by what they perceive things to be.

Arkansas - the school and the football program - does send out stuff that showcases its facilities and improvements that are being made.

I think it is a throwaway line for some prospects, but I also know that other coaches and staffs in the SEC and around the reason try to perpetuate the myth that Arkansas is still some backwoods place.

well I was thinking we probably did but you always hear them being blown away by the facilities,made me wonder…thanks Dudley.

Just my thoughts (obviously, I don’t talk to recruits) . . . but I think most recruits who are being sought by Power 5 teams are a bit jaded when it comes to the literature/brochures they receive from those schools. Pretty much ALL programs play up their facilities, on-campus environment, etc. So, while I’m pretty sure we DO mention those facts (and have pictures) prominently placed on the materials we send recruits, I just don’t think they pay too much attention to them. It’s when and if we get them on campus that they see them for themselves.

I agree with Dudley that in most cases (out of state athletes), they simply have the same stereotype of Arkansas that most people in the United States still have. Therefore, they aren’t expecting what they find in NWA when they arrive.

Another thing. I think other SEC schools will mention that our stadium “only” seats 70-72K (before the current expansion), and that SOUNDS small when you’re comparing that to 100K at Tennessee, A&M and Alabama, 90K at Georgia, LSU, Auburn, etc. But the thing is, we have more suites than any of those other stadiums (Alabama may have caught up), so our stadium looks as big from the field as any of them (except, perhaps, A&M with their triple decks), plus the new loge seats. When recruits see how big and imposing DWRRS really is, I think it surprises them a little, and makes an impression.

Of course, the rest of our athletic facilities (football and otherwise) speak for themselves.

Pictures are great; videos even better. But you cannot truly appreciate it until you see it. Plus any major recruit receives 50, 100, 250 pieces of mail a day from every P-5 school (or at least the ones recruiting him hard). All that mail is hard to decipher. I used to get seven newspapers a week and most would stack up in a corner somewhere without being read (that’s why I said I used to). Imagine getting that many pieces of mail six days a week. Facilities at the UA look like the facilities at Alabama, Auburn, LSU, Texas A&M, Oklahoma, etc., etc… Not that they really look the same; all are unique to themselves, but if you are sorting through that much mail, I’m sure it can become mind-boggling. If that recruit isn’t really thinking much about Arkansas, then he may or may not even look at the Hogs’ brochure. Add that to the stereotype and the bashing of the UA by other coaches, it’s no wonder they are amazed by what they find.

There is no way to explain to someone from Texas that’s never traveled what Fayetteville might be like. I talked to Bo Robinson (Yoakum AD and coach) last month while working on the March issue – our recruiting special that was mailed Thursday – about what Silas thought about Fayetteville. He was blown away. Silas loves fishing, but it’s all just small ponds they call tanks around there. When the plane circled over Beaver Lake before it landed, he saw water everywhere, including creeks and streams, unlike anything he’d seen at home. I told Bo that if Silas wanted fishing, he’d have to go to the White River and try trout. Bo knew about trout fishing, but had no clue that Arkansas had world class trout fishing. Before we were done talking, Bo said, “I just want you to know we’ve put all of the orange stuff away.” Bo played at Texas. I said I forgive you. I think he wants a fishing trip in Arkansas. Who knows, he might want to move here and coach.

It wasn’t just about the facilities, that got Silas, but the hills, trees, just everything. Remember, he’s from southwest Texas where there are not trees. Someone once told me that they tell newcomers to that area of Texas that there is a pretty girl hiding behind every tree. The only problem, there are no trees. I think that puts it into perspective. Everything about Fayetteville is beautiful. Most everyone who comes to Fayetteville loves it, everything about it, too. We live across the street (basically) from the Botanical Gardens and a trail that goes 7 miles around Lake Fayetteville. It’s just gorgeous. We (my family and myself) don’t take it for granted.

Now what has been built around Razorback Stadium that includes the weight room, the practice facility and the indoor workout area and what is happening to the north end of the stadium just makes it all gorgeous. You can’t do it justice.

I’ve always said that TV does not do justice what you will find at Augusta National Golf Club. Seeing it first hand just blows you away. The contours and the beauty of everything you see is not anything that TV can convey. You see it and you go “wow” and you do it over and over. Anyone who has been there says the same thing. Now, how many have heard it’s beautiful? Everyone. I think it’s the same way with the facilities on the UA campus. All of it is gorgeous, from football, basketball, softball, soccer, baseball. I even think Barnhill is beautiful.

I always hear about negative stereotypes and Arkansas - don’t other southern states have the same negative hayseed, hick stereotypes?

Texas isn’t the only place with a lack of trees… Auburn keeps losing them for some reason.

What I wonder… The new coaching staff is always very complementary of the area, the school, the atmosphere, the facilities, etc.… I wonder how much are the real feelings and how much is the company line that they have to say?

yes Clay I totally agree about Augusta! not a brown blade of grass anywhere! and the slope of those greens is incredible in person!I hope Morris can get what he needs to get us back on top,can’t wait to see how things change next yr.