Players from the BB and Club Dub era

I wont give CM crediit for much, but I certainly give him and his staff credit for landing Catalion

And then misusing him as a true freshman.


Mark Smith recruited Jalen Catalon. He had been recruiting him at SMU before following Chad Morris here. I think Mark used every minute and every visit that was possible under the rules with the Catalon family. Mark is a terrific person and terrific recruiter. He is one of my favorite people among coaches I’ve gotten to know at Arkansas through the years. Not sure about how he coached cornerbacks. I believe he’s coaching linebackers at Colorado now.

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As far as not using Catalon as a freshman, Mark said the decision was made early on not to play Jalen. He had two issues, one the ACL injury from the previous year. He also had a shoulder injury that needed surgery. They made the decision to do the shoulder surgery midway through that season so he’d be full go for spring practice.

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Had Chad Morris said he (Jalen) was the best HS football player he had ever seen?

He said Jalen was one of the five best he’d seen in person, yes.

Jalen is like the Honey Badger. He makes plays.

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Honey badger has to be one of the best nicknames of all time. Hope we will get one one of these days.

I like Thumper (Wayne Harris) Dirt (Dennis Winston) and Bad Dude (John Stearnes) better, but that’s just me.

What about Peanut Adams?

The folly of the Chad Morris era should not be modified by his recruiting. The on-field performance, the failure to keep the team believing early in year 2, the rejection of “investing in the school and its culture” (eg, moving to NWA), and the inability to hire a full staff were all going to deep six that third recruiting class. Any of the assistants capable of landing a gig elsewhere were likely going to bail before they had their career stunted any more than already stunted.

Bielema, too, had his staff fade late in his time, but he was not in the middle of year two when things when south. Where Morris landed his stud recruits, and the positions they played, contributes to the difference in Bielema-era recruiting and Morris-era recruiting.

Morris has had his star not just fade, it has petered out. He’ll likely never be more than a HS coach (which, heck, that’s what he really wanted all along, right?). Landing the HS gigs he has landed has been about salesmanship - once on the job you have a downhill journey to elite success. No different in OK or AR, probably.

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