By Kevin McPherson
LITTLE ROCK — Talented 2024 Hog offer Jase Richardson was the latest 5-star visitor to Arkansas, and he came away impressed with the Razorbacks men’s basketball program.
Richardson (6-4 point guard, Bishop Gorman in Las Vegas, Rivals national No. 20 / 5-star prospect) arrived in Fayetteville for his unofficial visit to Arkansas on Friday night, and his Saturday was filled with activities highlighted by attending the Hoop Hogs’ practice at the basketball performance center in the morning followed by attending the 19th-ranked Football Hogs 31-24 win over No. 23 Cincinnati at Razorbacks Stadium in the afternoon.
“I enjoyed my visit,” Richardson told Hogville.net on Sunday. “It was fun to see the game day atmosphere and how invested the fans are. I could see myself being part of this program. The style of play, coaching staff, and atmosphere are some key takeaways that I love.
“I’m highly interested in Arkansas, but right now it’s too early in the recruiting process for me to say (if or when a second visit takes place). I’m looking forward to continuing to build my relationship with the staff.”
Richardson made the trip to Arkansas with his basketball-famous father, Jason Richardson, who won an NCAA championship at Michigan State in ’99-00 before enjoying a lengthy 14-year NBA career (2001-2015) that started at Golden State (he was the 5th overall pick by the Warriors in the 2001 NBA Draft) followed by stints at Charlotte, Phoenix, Orlando, and Philadelphia.
Jason Richardson was at Golden State (’01-’07) when he was coached by current Arkansas head coach Eric Musselman, who was the Warriors’ head coach in ’02-03 and ’03-04. Also on that Golden State assistant coaching staff (2003-2010) was current Arkansas assistant coach Keith Smart.
Jase Richardson said he enjoyed the interaction this weekend between his father, Musselman, and Smart.
“It was amazing to be able to hear some of the stories about their Warriors days,” Jase Richardson said. “My Dad thought it (the visit) was a cool experience. He said that all this is coming full circle, to see me being recruited by some of his former coaches is unreal.
“He loved the (Hogs) practice and was engaged the whole time.”
Like father like son, because Jase Richardson was also locked in watching the Razorbacks practice as he noted what so far has been the identity of Musselman’s teams at Arkansas.
“My takeaways from practice were how hard this team works defensively,” Jase Richardson said. “Defense is one of their main focuses in practice and I was impressed by how hard the team worked all practice.”
Musselman and his staff shared with Jase Richardson what they see in him as a fit in their program.
“The staff told me that being a facilitating point guard that can score fits their style of basketball well, and that I would be able to succeed in the Arkansas system,” he said.
Just prior to making his trip to Arkansas, Jase Richardson talked about his interest in the Hoop Hogs’ nationally relevant program.
“Arkansas has been interesting to me because the love from the coaching staff I have received and the culture Arkansas basketball stands for,” he said. “Can’t wait to be out there!”
In addition to Arkansas, Richardson holds offers from Michigan State, Florida, Stanford, Arizona State, and Washington.
Jase Richardson was directly contacted by Arkansas coaches on June 15, which was the first day that NCAA Division 1 coaches could initiate direct contact with high school recruits. He reported his Arkansas offer on the same day.
In addition to Musselman and Smart, Jase Richardson is also in contact with Arkansas recruiting coordinator, former Hoop Hogs star, and former NBA wing Ronnie Brewer.
As a sophomore helping his Gorman Bishop team to a 30-1 record last season, Richardson averaged 14 points, 5 rebounds, 5 assists, and 2 steals per outing.
Richardson is not a blow-by slasher or an elite above-the-rim finisher like his father, who was a two-time NBA dunk champion. Instead, Jase is a crafty lefty who uses his frame and driving instincts to create finishing angles as he’s also comfortable converting through contact or dishing to a teammate for a better look when help defenders rotate to stop his drives. He’s an effective spot-up three-point shooter as well.