Arkansas coach Eric Musselman and staff have shown an ability to recruit elite talent, and the Razorbacks are hoping to lure ESPN’s 4-star Jase Richardson to Fayetteville after extending a scholarship offer on Wednesday.
Richardson, 6-foot-3, 175 pounds, of Las Vegas Bishop Gorman, had received offers from Arizona State, Stanford, Florida, Michigan State, Washington and others before the offers Razorbacks.
Arkansas’ second Elite Eight appearance last season since Musselman arrived in Fayetteville has Richardson’s attention.
“I was pretty excited once I got it,” Richardson said of the offer. “It’s a good program. They had a big race last year with a pretty good team, so it was a good feeling to have him.
Richardson averaged 14 points, 5 rebounds, 5 assists and 2 steals per game for the Gaels 30-1 as a sophomore. ESPN also ranks Richardson 5th in shooters and 25th overall prospect in the 2024 class.
College coaches were able to contact prospects for the Class of 2024 directly for the first time after midnight Wednesday. The Razorbacks reached out to him, and Musselman extended the offer later that day.
“My dad said he loved him as a coach,” Richardson said. “He came into the league and that was his first manager.”
Richardson is good friends with Arkansas native and target Razorbacks cornerback Jeremiah Hughes, who also assists Bishop Gorman. Hughes will make his third trip to Fayetteville this weekend for an official visit.
“I would most definitely tell him it’s an amazing place to surround yourself with,” Hughes said of Arkansas. “We’ll probably talk about how good their basketball team is and how we can both see ourselves playing there.”
He plays for the Paul George Elite Under-16s in the spring and summer on the Nike EYBL Tour. Depending on his schedule, Richardson said he would try to visit the Razorbacks.
Musselman’s style of play that allows freedom in attack while being aggressive in defense, and which appeals to Richardson.
“I feel like it’s a good choice for me,” he said. “I’m a good all-around player and I feel like I could adapt very well to their system if I went there.”
BIG CLEAT TO VISIT
Arkansas is expected to welcome seven official visitors this weekend, including massive defensive tackle Ian Geffrard.
Geffrard, 6-6, 365 pounds, of Mableton (Ga.) Whitefield Academy, has scholarship offers from Arkansas, Auburn, Texas, Mississippi State, Boston College, Louisville, Duke, Georgia Tech and other programs.
“I’m really looking forward to seeing what the coach [Sam] Pittman has done since he arrived in person,” Geffrard said Wednesday night. “He told me earlier today that it was a beautiful city and the people there were down to earth too.”
The consensus 3-star prospect is listed as an offensive tackle by scouting services, but the Razorbacks love him on defense. They also watch him in attack.
“I’m drafted for both, but mainly for defensive tackles,” said Geffrard, who recorded 37 tackles as a junior.
Liberty and Coastal Carolina are other schools that recruit him to play defense. While he likes the attack more, Geffrard is open to the other side of the ball.
He has made official visits to Boston College and Auburn and plans to host a visit to Mississippi State soon. Geffrard explained why he wants to visit Arkansas.
“It’s a school that I want to include in the decision-making process and see what it’s like on the other side of the ball while playing at the top level,” he said.
Razorbacks defensive line coach Deke Adams is his main scout.
“I think he’s a great coach from the interactions I’ve had with him and what other people have to say about him,” Geffrard said.