For Bobby Petrino to have success with the Arkansas Razorbacks, as well as the support of their fans, he'll need to sign two big recruits in 2010.
No doubt college football fans know that Bobby Petrino has a tough road ahead this year. After the exit of Felix Jones and Darren McFadden, the Hogs are left with, respectfully, not as much talent at running back and a young defense depleted by offseason suspensions.
But 2008 isn't the year that most Hog fans believe Petrino will be making his mark in the SEC.
With some young talent at wide receiver and transfer Ryan Mallet waiting for next year, the Hogs have some things to look forward to, but it can't stop there. Arkansas has traditionally found its niche with instate recruiting whether it was Houston Nutt or Lou Holtz, but that will change with Petrino as he has the ability to bring in out-of-state talent.
What can't happen is the Hogs losing out on some great instate talent as they did with quarterback Cody Burns and offensive lineman Lee Zeimba going to Auburn.
If Petrino wants to be successful, he'll sign the two biggest recruits coming out of a talent-rich pool that Arkansas high school football has to offer in 2010.
The first is running back Michael Dyer from Little Rock Christian. Many are already predicting him as a top five running back for the 2010 class, and some have already gone out on a limb calling him "the next Darren McFadden."
With Dyer's size at 5'10" and 205 pounds, that's probably a stretch but the small back has talent none-the-less. He is said to have field vision as good as Felix Jones and plenty of agility. Dyer, who runs a 4.4 in the 40-yard dash, rushed for 2710 yards and 17 touchdowns his sophomore year at Christian, with a miraculous game of 173 yards and five touchdowns against Siloam Springs. Remember, he was a sophomore.
Also banking from a wonderful sophomore season is Pine Bluff dual-threat quarterback Claude Johnson. Johnson is also predicted as a top five guy in the dual-threat category. Like Dyer, the 6-foot, 195 pound Johnson also runs a 4.4 in the 40 and has already been rumored to be a top prospect for Oklahoma.
Johnson also finished among the top three at the Top Gun quarterback challenge in Fayetteville, a competition designed by former Arkansas offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn to give major high school quarterbacks a chance to display their skills for a number of universities.
Both have commented that Arkansas is at the top of their list with a few other schools. As mentioned, Oklahoma is looking at Johnson and Dyer has said it's probably between Arkansas and Alabama. Both have also been reported that their interest in Arkansas was higher after they hired Petrino.
As Petrino will find his talent all over, he has to land these two guys in Razorback red. It would be another hard loss, especially if both guys go to an SEC team like Burns and Zeimba, which certainly seems like a possibility with Dyer.