Arkansas picked up it's tenth football commitment for 2005 on Monday night in Mesquite (Texas) wide receiver Reggie Fish.
Fish, 5-foot-7, 145 pounds, runs the 40-yard dash in 4.4 seconds. He ran the shuttle in an eye-popping 3.78 seconds at the College Station (Texas) NIKE Training Camp on May 1, which was the fastest time there. He also won the Offensive MVP award at the U.S. Army All-America Combine in January, drawing comparisons to NFL All-Pro Marvin Harrison.
Fish's father, Reginald Fish, played with Arkansas Coach Houston Nutt at Oklahoma State, and the two have been close friends ever since. In fact, the first letter Reggie ever received was from Nutt. The letter is laminated and is hanging on Fish's wall today.
"Really, it was a lot of things in the decision. As far as the education, the football and the coaching staff," Fish said. "I really just felt like I was at home. That's really why I committed."
The two have kept in touch over the years, through Nutt's tenure at Murray State, to Boise State to Arkansas. Fish, Sr. said he is thankful for the letter Nutt sent to his son, and he said he thinks it helped him raise the bar for what he needs to do to get better.
Arkansas coaches were so impressed with Fish after the recent Arkansas Seniors Only Camp, they offered him a scholarship when he returned home. Fish chose the Hogs over an offer from SMU and heavy recruiting attention from Missouri, Oklahoma State and Iowa.
"I came home, talked about it [with family] talked about it with a couple of my trainers and coaches. I decided to make that move. That's where I want to spend the next few years," he said.
Fish sports a 3.48 GPA and is on track to qualify academically with a 850 on the SAT. He passed for 396 yards and 6 touchdowns while rushing for 736 yards and 4 scores as a junior. Fish earned all-district honors for his performance, and he was named district sophomore of the year in 2002.
"Houston Nutt was just one of those kind of guys who never met a stranger," Fish the elder said. "We both liked having fun and enjoying ourselves, and he was very respectful to me and I was to him."
With his college destination no longer in question, Fish will turn his attention to his senior year of high school. Mesquite starts two-a-days on Aug. 9, and the first day of classes begins Aug. 16.
Fish can provide a nice change-change-of-pace from several 6-foot-5 wideouts who opted with the Razorbacks for 2004. He joins nine other prospects in what is becoming a nice-looking early haul for the Hawgs.
ARKANSAS COMMIT LIST
1. ATH Darren McFadden, 6-1, 203, 4.33, Little Rock (Ark.) Pulaski Oak Grove
2. CB Brannon Kidd, 5-11, 185, 4.37, Butler County CC, El Dorado (Kan.)
3. QB Casey Dick, 6-2, 192, 4.65, Allen (Texas)
4. Marcus Shavers, 6-4, 250, 4.8, Allen (Texas)
5. OL Colin Tucker, 6-5, 265, 5.2, Richardson (Texas) Pearce
6. OL Joey Crossland, 6-5 1/2, 291, 5.25, Russellville (Ark.)
7. DT Cord Gray, 6-0 3/4, 282, 5.15, Wynne (Ark.)
8. S Matt Harris, 6-2, 176, 4.7, Richardson (Texas) Pearce
9. S Elston Forte, 6-1, 190, 4.47, Little Rock (Ark.) Mills