FAYETTEVILLE - For the first time in the Bret Bielema era at Arkansas, signing day was filled little drama.

FAYETTEVILLE - For the first time in the Bret Bielema era at Arkansas, signing day was filled little drama.

That’s both good and bad, depending, but probably more the former than the latter.

There were no last-minute ditches from Arkansas or lost in-state players who spurned the Razorbacks. Some toss-up players were missed. Some toss-up players landed in Fayetteville. The day was mostly by-the-book, as unextraordinary as a signing day can be, anyway. Good. Not great. Certainly not bad.

Arkansas signed 20 players when including the two early enrollees on Wednesday. It is a bit shy of the total number Bielema said he wanted, but the Arkansas coach is holding some scholarships back as he anticipates a transfer or two as consideration in the coming weeks.

"These senior transfers are very, very intriguing," Bielema said. "They’re guys that can come in and play. A lot of times they’ll start reaching out as soon as their junior seasons are done. There are some possibilities there that I’ve had to sort through. A lot of those don’t come out until after signing day for good reason. I’d like to keep a couple back for us in that regard."

The number could bump to 21 depending. Bielema said Wednesday recruit Dillon Hays, a lineman from Little Rock Christian, will be put on scholarship in some fashion. That could be mean he’s added to this year’s class if no seniors transfer in. It could means Hays grayshirts or it could mean some sort of academically scholarship. Bielema did not elaborate, simply saying Hays would be around.

According to the 24/7 Sports composite recruiting rankings, Arkansas had the 25th-best class in the country and ninth-best in the Southeastern Conference. That list calls Hope graduate McTelvin Agim the team’s only five-star signee, while Devwah Whaley, Austin Capps, T.J. Hammonds, Briston Guidry and Jake Heinrich are four-star recruits.

It’s about the same place Arkansas landed with its 2015 class. The Razorbacks were called No. 23 and 10th in the SEC. By position Arkansas landed four one quarterback, running back, fullback and tight end, two wide receivers, three offensive linemen, four defensive linemen, four linebackers, two defensive backs and an athlete (Hammonds, who is expected to play running back, wide receiver and be a kick/punt returner.

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Arkansas Razorbacks 2016 Football Recruiting Class

McTelvin Agim

6-3, 280 pounds, Texarkana, Texas (Hope)

Defensive End

Bielema: "McTelvin Agim, has proven to us he can play right away. Where we don’t know. He is a very talented player. He has put on weight. He came into my offense yesterday and he is up to 280, He played high school ball at about 260."

Kofi Boateng

6-1, 183 pounds, Arlington, Texas (Lamar)

Wide Receiver

Bielema: "Tall, rangy unbelievably gifted kid we feel more as a Z receiver."

Austin Capps

6-4, 320 pounds, Star City, Arkansas

Defensive tackle

Bielema: "He is a guy that could play probably on either side of the ball. He is big, tough and physical. I offered him when he was a sophomore in high school."

Deon Edwards

6-1, 200 pounds, Clermont, Florida (Lake Minneola)


Bielema: "At the safety position another Florida product in D.D (Deion) Edwards that we are excited about."

Briston Guidry

6-3, 286 pounds, Metairie, Louisiana (Archbishop Rummel)

Defensive Tackle

Bielema: "Briston has even a fun recruiting story. He was committed to another SEC school. We competed (for) him and the rest of the country and he came through i a big way and has been a shining star for us. A kid that really enjoys life."

Grayson Gunter

6-6, 233 pounds, Madison, Mississippi (Madison Central)

Tight End

T.J. Hammonds

5-11, 195 pounds, Little Rock, Arkansas (Pulaski Robinson)


Bielema: "Another young man from instate that really could play four or five positions. We are going to start him off at the running back but also let him work at the slot receiver and as a punt returner. Just a really fun, engaging kid that I think can bring a lot to the table."

De’Jon Harris

6-0, 240 pounds, Harvey, Louisiana (John Ehret)


Bielema: "Take a guy like ‘Scoota’, who is a linebacker and his No. 1 quarterback gets knocked out and they make a run all the way to the state championship with him at quarterback. I keep telling him he’s going to be my short-yardage, goal line, red-zone quarterback because he’s a beast at that position in those situations."

Jake Heinrich

6-4, 295 pounds, Urbandale, Iowa

Offensive Line

Bielema: "Jake Heinrich had a surgery on his hand and his senior season was cut short. But he is full go now and moving forward."

Alexy Jean-Baptiste

6-3, 220 pounds, Pompano Beach, Florida (Coconut Creek)


Bielema: "He’s a kid who really wants to have success. His cousin was a great player for me at Wisconsin that spoke just volumes about who he is and what he is."

Hayden Johnson

6-3, 250 pounds, Columbia, Missouri (Rock Bridge)


Bielema: "Wanted to play fullback. He was recruited as a D-lineman by some schools but he stood strong after we offered. Several schools, Florida State and a lot of the SEC came in an he stood strong and I really appreciate what he did there."

Jordan Jones

6-3, 180 pounds, Smackover, Arkansas

Wide Receiver

Bielema: "He is a tall rangy kid that ran a sub 4.4 40. Just saw the talent and got with him and his family. He needed to do some things off the field and he did that and we made an offer and then as the rest of the SEC came in he stood strong to everybody and I think is going to be a very, very gifted athlete here who will compete right away for us at wide receiver."

Cole Kelley

6-7, 260 pounds, Lafayette, Louisiana (Teurlings Catholic)


Bielema: "On the offensive side we always talk about we want to be big, well how about a quarterback. (Offensive coordinator Dan Enos) really felt strong about him. He is an absolutely very, very talented young man. He throws the ball 100 miles, he has great velocity, he has great touch. He is a very,v very tough competitor."

Giovanni LaFrance

6-2, 235 pounds, New Orleans, Louisiana (St. Augustine)


Bielema: "Just a straight thumper in the middle and is very, very violent. Could probably play fullback for us too. Explosive. Very, very powerful."

Terrance Deion Malone

6-3, 295 pounds, Batesville, Mississippi (Northwest Community College)

Offensive Guard

Bielema: "(Strength and conditioning coach Ben Herbert) Herb’s is blown away with his ability to work, and the other offensive linemen have been very complimentary of him."

Jonathan Marshall

6-4, 270 pounds, Shepherd, Texas

Defensive Line

Bielema: "This kid’s name got put up there just because he was on our Alpha list. And he vaulted to the top of our board and we went after him full bore and we ended up flipping him and getting him."

Paul Ramirez

6-5, 275 pounds, Rialto, California (San Bernardino Community College)

Offensive Tackle

Bielema: "Paul is going to join us not until June but he is a very, very talented tackle who can play left or right tackle and will give us immediate depth if not in the starting rotation himself."

Micahh Smith

6-1, 197 pounds, Marshall, Texas


Bielema: "Micahh Smith that I think can be a really nice addition to us in the middle of our defense."

Dee Walker

6-2, 210 pounds, Moultrie, Georgia (Colquitt County)


Bielema: "Dee-Walk is explosive, powerful, rangy, long arms, could probably play both outside linebacker positions."

Devwah Whaley

6-0, 210 pounds, Beaumont, Texas (Central)

Running Back

Bielema: "Probably in my opinion, I have recruited a lot of good running backs, he is as gifted as any of the ones I have recruited. He is strong, he is physical. he has a nose for the football,. he accelerates."