Arkansas women’s basketball program opened the week-long early basketball signing period on Wednesday by inking two standouts and will add a 5-star prospect in the next few days.
Razorback head coach Mike Neighbors announced that Farmington star forward Jenna Lawrence (6-3) and Derby Kan., guard Mayrn Archer (5-7) both inked their letters while Winter Park (Fla.) St. John’s County Day point guard Tahlia Scott (5-9) is set to do so next Tuesday.
The class is ranked 14th nationally in women’s college basketball per ESPN.
“For us, it is important pieces to go around what we already have,’ Neighbors said. “This time next week, when you look at our roster can be in the next two or three years, we will be as talented as anybody in our league. And if you are as talented as anybody in our league, you are as talented as anybody in the country.
“They are coming from all states now, we have to be more thorough, but that is a sign that you have attracted and got something that is attracting kids.”
Lawrence is a four-star prospect and ranked 61st nationally by HoopGurlz.
She is coming off a junior season in which she averaged 18 points, 9.3 rebounds, 2.3 steals and 1.7 blocks per game while leading Farmington to a 27-1 mark.
Lawrence has gone 101-5 in her high school career while playing two years at Melbourne – winning a state title in 2021 – and last season at Farmington.
Archer is the 29th-best player in the country per Prep Girls and 75th nationally by Blue Star.
She averaged 10.0 points, 3.5 rebounds, 4.6 assists and 2.8 steals per game last season.
Scott is ranked as high as 11th by ranked No. 11 in ESPN’s rankings for the Class of 2023.
She averaged 31.5 points per game last and scored over 50 points in a pair of games and chose Arkansas over Florida, Florida State, Texas, Tennessee, Alabama, Rutgers, Notre Dame and Virginia.
Scott’s official visit came during Arkansas’ 40-21 win over Texas on Sept. 11, 2021 and Neighbors believes the overall health of the athletic program is helping his recruiting.
“There is no doubt that the overall success of our school, all the teams, has factored into that,” Neighbors said. “You are going to be eating in the cafeteria with future Olympians, future NFL, NBA, people you see on the golf tour, the tennis tours…It is a really good place to be right now.
“It is starting to spread in that SEC footprint, but also stretching outside to all parts of the country.”
Neighbors lauded assistants Pauline Love, Lacey Goldwire and Todd Schaeffer for the recruiting haul.
“When it is all said and done, this is going to be a class that is recognized nationally in the rankings that they do,” Neighbors said. “I have zero interest in those rankings, but it is really important for Pauline and Lacey, because it is often something important that future employers will look at.
“Coach Schaefer, who sometimes gets pigeon-holed into being a skill developer and my right hand, he had a big part in this recruiting class as well.”