Ryan Mallett to Return to Arkansas, Make the Razorbacks Contenders in 2010

Blake StansberyCorrespondent IJanuary 8, 2010

GAINESVILLE, FL - OCTOBER 17: Quarterback Ryan Mallett #15 of the Arkansas Razorbacks signals a touchdown against the Florida Gators October 17, 2009 at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville, Florida.  (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)
Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images

According to multiple sources, Arkansas starting quarterback Ryan Mallett will announce his decision to return to Arkansas for the 2010 season this afternoon.

The University of Arkansas has set the press conference time for 1:30 p.m. today.

This comes just the day after Jevan Snead declared his intentions to forgo his senior season at Ole Miss and to go into the NFL and join fellow underclassman quarterback Jimmy Clausen in the draft.

Mallett helped the Hogs emerge as the SEC's leading offense, icing the cake with a Liberty Bowl victory over ECU in his first year as the Razorbacks' starting quarterback.

In his first year, Mallett either broke or tied 16 Arkansas records, including season passing yards and season passing touchdowns.

After redshirting the 2008 season due to transferring from Michigan, Mallett joined a large group of sophomores in 2009 that led Arkansas to be one of the most explosive and exciting offenses in the SEC and the nation.

With the return of Mallett, the Razorbacks are set to return more players than any other team in the SEC next season and will be seen as a contender in the SEC West.

Tight end DJ Williams is still considering his NFL options and could decide to forgo his senior year for the NFL Draft. If Williams decides to return, the Razorbacks will be returning the best group of receivers/tight ends in the SEC and possibly the nation.

The news that Mallett is going to return first broke Thursday night by a local TV station and later was reported by several other local sources. ESPN and all other major sports sites also are now reporting that their sources say Mallett is returning for next season.

After the 1:30 press conference, Mallett is scheduled to be on a large amount of ESPN TV and radio shows, including today's College Football Live on ESPN and ESPN2.

The announcement is music to the ears of Razorbacks fans who believe Mallett could help lead the Razorbacks as contenders in the SEC in 2010, with possible Heisman chances to boot.

The announcement could also give a big boost to recruiting for the Razorbacks. The Hogs are currently ranked last in the SEC in recruiting by most major services and look to finish strong in what is primarily a needs class focused on defensive players and athletes capable of playing multiple positions.

The exposure Mallett will get going into the 2010 season is expected to be magnified from 2009, and that can only help the Arkansas program gain more recognition on the recruiting trail.

Mallett's return appears to be the right decision for his future, and a decision that could lead the Razorbacks to a 2010 they may never forget.