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Tight end target to visit Razorbacks

by Richard Davenport | June 6, 2023 at 2:05 a.m.
Arkansas tight ends coach Morgan Turner is shown during practice Friday, Dec. 16, 2022, in Fayetteville.

Arkansas is expected to host at least six prospects this weekend, including highly recruited tight end Decker DeGraaf.

DeGraaf, 6-5, 230 pounds, of Glendora, Calif., will be making his second official visit to Fayetteville after seeing Utah over the weekend. He has visits set for Michigan State and Washington remaining.

His respect for Razorbacks tight ends coach Morgan Turner and offensive coordinator Dan Enos has him ready to visit Arkansas.

“The reason I’m visiting Arkansas is because I love what they are doing over there,” said DeGraaf, who will be accompanied by his father and uncle on his visit. “I love the new tight end coach [who] has a lot of experience from Stanford. The new OC from Alabama, and I think they have a great future ahead of them.”

DeGraaf had 23 receptions for 378 yards and 5 touchdowns, and 34 tackles, 3 sacks and 1 quarterback hurry as a junior. He was limited to five games last year due to transfer rules after playing as a sophomore at nearby San Dimas High School.

He has scholarship offers from Arkansas, Utah, Arizona, Miami, California, Washington, Michigan State, Arizona State, Boston College and other schools. Recruiting website rated him a 3-star prospect and the No. 45 tight end in the nation in the 2024 class.

He said he will probably make his college decision in early July.

More from WholeHogSports: Coverage of the NCAA Fayetteville Regional

Turner visited DeGraaf’s school during the spring evaluation period that ran from April 15 through May 31.

“My relationship with Coach Turner is great,” DeGraaf said. “He came by the school and was watching me lift and practice. We’ve been talking for a while and building our relationship. I think he is a great person on and off the field.”

Prior to joining the Arkansas staff in December, Turner spent 10 seasons at Stanford, where he produced several NFL tight ends, including Dalton Schultz, Austin Hooper, Coby Fleener, Levine Toilolo, Zach Ertz and others.

“Amazing. He told me he has sent nine guys to the NFL,” DeGraaf said.

During Enos’ first tenure in Fayetteville, Arkansas produced two tight ends drafted into the NFL in Jeremy Sprinkle and Hunter Henry, who became the Razorbacks’ second Mackey Award winner in 2015.

“That is incredible,” DeGraaf said.

U.S. News & World Report recently ranked Fayetteville the 10th-best city to live in in America. The list marks the eighth consecutive year Fayetteville was ranked in the top 10 nationally and No. 1 among SEC cities.

“I learned it has a great college city,” DeGraaf said. “I’m excited to get out there and see it.”

The chance to play in the SEC is also appealing to DeGraaf.

“I would love to play in the SEC. It has always been a dream as a kid and has the best competition,” DeGraaf said.

Others expected to officially visit the Razorbacks are offensive lineman Jac’Qawn McRoy (6-8, 367 pounds) of Pinson (Ala.) Clay-Chalkville; wide receiver Parker Livingstone (6-4, 190) of Lucas (Texas) Lovejoy; linebacker Jordan Burns (6-2, 220) of Atlanta, (Ga.) Pace Academy; linebacker Brian Huff, 6-3, 225, of Valley View High School and athlete Ahkhari Johnson (5-11, 180) of Texarkana (Texas) Pleasant Grove.


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