Arkansas has been in need of some headliners in the 2016 class and just landed one with the commitment of running back Chase Hayden.
WOO PIG SOOIE pic.twitter.com/ayDjpkj2lp— Chase Hayden (@Chase_Hayden2) July 25, 2016
Hayden chose the Razorbacks over offers from Florida, Michigan, Tennessee, South Carolina, Oklahoma State, Missouri, Louisville, Arizona, and many others. He’s considered a 4-star prospect on both Rivals and 247sports, which makes him the rare recruit ranked that highly on both the premier recruiting services but still considered a 3-star composite prospect because of lower ratings on ESPN and Scout.
Considered the nation’s 4th-ranked all purpose back on both Rivals and 247sports, Hayden was bumped up after an impressive showing at The Opening earlier this month. Here’s some video from the event:
At The Opening, ESPN national recruiting analyst Craig Haubert described Hayden, saying "He’s a back that offers a lot of versatility and he has good speed and good hands. This is good setting to see what backs do when they don’t have the football and he’s shown a lot versatility The more you can do the more valuable you are."
Hayden unofficially visited Arkansas in June and soon after declared the Hogs his leader. He’s since taken other visits but apparently nobody was able to change his mind.
Richard Davenport and Dudley Dawson have had some great content on Hayden, particularly relating to his father, who played running back for Tennessee in college and in the NFL, and how he’s been involved with Hayden’s decision.
Arkansas is working to restock its running back corps following the departure of Jonathan Williams and Alex Collins to the NFL. The Razorbacks are bringing back Rawleigh Williams and signed a pair of highly rated running backs in February in Devwah Whaley and T.J. Hammonds. Maleek Williams is another running back committed to Arkansas in this class. It’s a position group that seems to be in great shape for the future with Hayden’s commitment.
Hayden is the 17th commitment for Arkansas’ 2017 class.