The 2018 recruiting cycle is still in its early stages and news hasn’t started really started heating up yet, but that didn’t stop Arkansas from getting some great news on Tuesday when tight end Luke Ford committed to the Razorbacks.
Ratings this early can be premature, but he is considered a 4-star prospect on Scout and a 3-star elsewhere. His offer list, however, is very impressive. Ford chose the Hogs over offers from Alabama, Georgia, Florida, Oklahoma, Louisville, Oklahoma State, West Virginia, and several others.
Arkansas’ tight end depth chart is loaded with juniors and sophomores right now, so it was really important to get a good tight end out of this high school class so the Razorbacks will have quality numbers down the line.
Tight end, of course, has been a premier position at Arkansas in recent years. D.J. Williams and Hunter Henry both won the Mackey Award and Jeremy Sprinkle is in position to be drafted this spring. Chris Gragg has also played in the NFL and new signee Jeremy Patton was the nation’s top junior college tight end last year.
Ford had just visited his home state school of Illinois and reportedly really enjoyed his visit, but obviously not as much as he enjoyed his visit to Fayetteville last weekend.
Ford has a massive frame, the type of frame that would tempt some schools to make him an offensive tackle, but he shows the run after catch ability and natural ball skills to be a threat as a tight end in college. He uses his height and range and catches the ball very naturally away from his body. While maybe not a "make you miss" guy after the catch, he shows enough foot speed to turn short passes into long gains and is a tough guy for defensive backs to bring down in the open field. He shows willingness to be physical as a runner and blocker, but still needs to improve overall blocking technique.
Ford is the third commitment in Arkansas’ 2018 recruiting class.