FAYETTEVILLE — Sam Pittman has made no secret of the fact he wants to keep the top prospects in Arkansas at home.
White Hall’s 2020 running back Donte Buckner is highly interested in attending Arkansas with his good friend Kevin Compton from Watson Chapel. Compton was offered a preferred walk-on spot on Sunday and will officially visit the Hogs on Jan. 31-Feb. 2 weekend.
Buckner, 6-1, 192, has scholarship offers from Northeastern State, Southern Arkansas University and Ohio Western. He has a preferred walk-on offer from Virginia Tech. He is hoping for a preferred walk-on offer from Arkansas.
“I’ve always been interested in the Razorbacks,” Buckner said. “But ever since I’ve grown up people have told me they don’t recruit instate. I’ve grown to know that.
“My junior I rushed for 1,954 yards and then 18 touchdowns. I was just wondering why I hadn’t got an offer. I’ve always wanted to play for the Razorbacks, but I’ve never got the recruitment. It’s always been there. I’ve wanted to stay instate where my family is just a few hours away.”
He followed up that junior season with a great one in 2019 as well. He rushed for 1,859 yards and had over 2,000 yards of total offense scoring 26 touchdowns. Buckner talked about his strengths as a running back.
“My ability to see the field before the play even starts,” Buckner said. “I can read a defense like it’s nothing.
“Usually a linebacker only has two options. Run, pass. They have something if they pass and they have something if they see run. On run they still have two options. Either you escape them or they stick you. Some linebackers you can study on film and see how they tackle so I know what my move is gonna be. I know before they even think about tackling me what my move is gonna be even if they encounter me.”
Buckner made the all-combine team in San Antonio this past January prior to the All-American Game played each year.
He talked about the areas he needs to improve in as well.
“My speed,” Buckner said. “Not really my speed, but my quickness. Everybody says, ‘oh he doesn’t look as fast.’ It’s really not my speed. It’s the way I see the field. I see a hole and I will be gone. If I see something different I get more yards here instead of just showing the speed and getting six yards if I can get 12 yards here I want to go here. I’m looking for the best opportunity for my team.
“My fastest time is a 4.58. I’m a fast kid and I’m running track this spring so that will improve even more. If anything I had to say I need to improve on I would say my decision making.”
Buckner talked about what it would mean to play in college with Compton and possibly White Hall lineman AJ Johnson , 6-2, 300. Buckner described Compton as his brother since they were age two.
“We always talked about going to the same college,” Buckner said. “Making one college and bring the fans. What it would be like for all our moms and families. Our families are close and our moms are close. All of them ride up there in two big cars. Have on a Buckner jersey, Compton jersey and Johnson jersey.
“That would mean the absolute world. On top of that would bring back the fact this year Arkansas’ fans didn’t have as much hope. I want to bring back that hope. That’s what I want to do. I want to put the faith that Arkansas used to have when they had Darren McFadden and Peyton Hillis. I want to bring that team. I don’t want everybody to think…..I’ve seen mean tweets about Arkansas. I don’t like the mean tweets about Arkansas.”