When University of Arkansas running backs coach Jimmy Smith extended a scholarship offer to Georgia high school prospect Amauri Anderson, the Little Rock native was elated.
"It meant a lot. I've wanted to play there ever since I was a little kid," said Anderson, who plays running back. "So it felt different from the other ones."
Anderson, 5-9, 178 pounds, of Alpharetta (Ga.) High School, had scholarship offers from Texas A&M, Florida State, Colorado, South Carolina, Miami, Indiana and Florida Atlantic prior to the Hogs offered Wednesday.
Ole Miss offered the class of 2025 prospect Thursday.
He said he's an admirer of Arkansas quarterback KJ Jefferson and recalls running backs Darren McFadden and Rakeem Boyd as Hog standouts.
Being a Razorback would be an honor should he decide to become one.
"It would mean a lot," Anderson said. "I don't know if I'll be one [a Razorback] right now because I'm taking my recruiting process slow. I'm just going to keep working, but I love that I have the offer from there."
Anderson's mother and father grew up in Blytheville. He estimates about 30 family members still live in the area.
"They were happy for me," Anderson said of his family and the Arkansas offer. "A lot of people are saying come home. I just know they were real happy for me."
A few cousins -- Kylan Young, Cadarius Young and Jy Young, along with an aunt, Terria Mitchel -- were vocal about him being a Razorback.
"They want me to be a Hog, because they're Hog fans," Anderson said.
Anderson rushed 62 times for 441 yards, 2 touchdowns and had 5 catches for 48 yards and a touchdown as a sophomore. He has yet to be rated by any of the major recruiting services
Smith, who secured the commitment of highly recruited Georgia 2024 running back Jadan Baugh on Friday, is urging Anderson to visit Fayetteville in June.
"He was telling me he wants to get me down there," Anderson said. "He thinks I'm going to like it. He said everybody down there have been talking about me for a long time."
Anderson said Smith was very up front about wanting him to be a Hog.
"He said if I wanted to commit today, [I] could," Anderson said. "I feel like they actually want me. He wants to stay in touch with me and build a relationship."
Anderson, who moved to Georgia prior to the sixth grade, is friends with former Razorback running back James Jointer. He said Smith is the first college coach to tell him that he could commit on the spot.
"It was just different because he's a real cool guy," he said. "The way he's talking about building relationships. He liked that I love football. It's not all about football. He wants to build a relationship outside of football with my family members, my mom, my dad."
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