Arkansas’ Latest Commit Gets Extraordinary Praise from Michigan’s Other Harbaugh

Marcus Wimberly, Jim Harbaugh, Arkansas football, Arkansas recruiting

Arkansas football is up to two commitments in the 2025 class, as Marcus Wimberly announced his pledge Saturday afternoon.

The Bauxite safety revealed his decision during the Razorbacks’ big recruiting weekend, which was dubbed the Hogwild Hangout and featured numerous prospects across several classes who made their way to Fayetteville.

It is still relatively early in Wimberly’s recruitment and he’s still unrated by the major recruiting services, but Michigan extended a scholarship shortly after Arkansas. His other offers were from Memphis, Sam Houston State, UT-Martin and UAPB.

Both of Arkansas’ commits in the Class of 2025 so far are in-state recruits who grew up dreaming of playing for the Razorbacks, with Central Arkansas Christian quarterback Grayson Wilson being the first back in April.

“Growing up being a fan of them, I felt a little emotional, but I didn’t want to let it out right there,” Wimberly told Hogville after receiving his offer at a camp on June 17. “When I got to the car, tears of joy just bailed out of me.”

Wimberly didn’t commit on the spot, though. Instead, just like Wilson, he waited exactly six weeks before officially announcing he was staying home to play for Arkansas.

With two players in the fold, the Razorbacks have more 2025 commits than all but two SEC teams — Georgia (6) and Alabama (5). LSU and Vanderbilt also have two, while Auburn and Tennessee have just one. (Oklahoma, which will also be in the conference by then, has four while Texas has one.)

Marcus Wimberly at Bauxite

As you might expect for an SEC-caliber athlete in a small town, Marcus Wimberly plays on both sides of the ball at Bauxite, which is a Class 4A school near Bryant and Benton.

Offensively, he was primarily a wide receiver for the Miners, but an injury to a teammate forced him to take over quarterback duties late in the season. He racked up more than 1,500 yards of offense as a sophomore.

On the other side of the ball, Wimberly played safety and notched three interceptions, two of which he returned for touchdowns — including a 95-yard return.

Those stats don’t fully illustrate his athleticism, though. He’s been clocked as fast as 4.37 seconds in the 40-yard dash, but ran it in 4.52 seconds — and notched a 38-inch vertical and 10-foot, 2-inch broad jump — at an Arkansas camp last month.

That camp performance is what earned Wimberly a scholarship from the Razorbacks — just a few months after a pair of Division II schools, Harding and Ouachita Baptist, gave him his first two offers.

It wasn’t until May 11 that he got his first Division I offer and it was from an FCS school, UAPB. Sam Houston State, UT-Martin and Memphis followed before he burst onto the scene with Arkansas and Michigan.

That kind of player doesn’t come through Bauxite often. In fact, the last FBS scholarship signee to come from the school — according to Best of Arkansas Sports’ database — was Dan Dawson, an athlete in the 1997 class. He played linebacker at Rice.

In a feature on the UA website in 2016, which compiled every player — walk-on and scholarship alike — for the Razorbacks since 1963, there were none from Bauxite.

There’s a chance that the last Arkansas football player from Bauxite was Leon “Muscles” Campbell, who starred for the Razorbacks from 1946-49 before becoming the 15th overall pick in the 1950 NFL Draft.

Before that, George Cole was an All-SWC quarterback for the Razorbacks in 1927. He went on to be a longtime assistant coach for Arkansas football, even serving as the head coach in 1942, before eventually becoming the athletics director from 1970-73. The field at Baum-Walker Stadium is still named after him.

Praise for Wimberly from Harbaugh

The Wolverines were particularly high on Marcus Wimberly.

According to Scorebook Live, Michigan safeties coach Jay Harbaugh told Bauxite head coach Caleb Perry that he was one of the best safeties in the country for the 2025 – if not *the* best – and that’s out of a group of 55 safeties they’re evaluating in the class.

Harbaugh, who is also the Wolverines’ special teams coordinator, is the son of Michigan football coach Jim Harbaugh. Since taking over the program in 2015, Harbaugh has extended a few offers in the Natural State.

Most notably, Michigan was one of the earliest schools to offer Greenwood quarterback Kane Archer, doing so when he was just 13 years old and a rising eighth grader.

In-State Arkansas Recruiting Efforts in 2025

The Razorbacks are still trying to finish strong with their 2024 class, which is currently ranked 16th nationally by 247Sports. Marcus Wimberly’s commitment shows they’re also already getting a jump on 2025.

Starting the class with a pair of in-state recruits is also an encouraging sign for Arkansas football, which is trying to fortify its borders even better than it has in the current cycle.

While they’ve landed five homegrown talents — Benton running back Braylen Russell, Little Rock Mills defensive end Charleston Collins, Pine Bluff wide receiver Courtney Crutchfield, Bentonville wide receiver CJ Brown and Fort Smith Southside offensive lineman Kobe Branham — in 2024, they’ve also seen some head to SEC rivals.

Little Rock Christian quarterback Walker White is committed to Auburn and Valley View linebacker Brian Huff is committed to Missouri. It also seems like Harding Academy linebacker Wyatt Simmons and Bryant defensive end TJ Lindsey (now at IMG Academy) are heading elsewhere despite holding Arkansas offers.

That would make the Razorbacks 5 for 9 on in-state prospects they actively pursued, which doesn’t include several others who have already committed to or been offers by other Power Five programs.

The 2025 crop of in-state recruits may not be quite as deep and it remains to be seen how the top-end talent compares to 2024, but Arkansas has already extended seven offers within its borders.

In addition to Wimberly and Central Arkansas Christian quarterback Grayson Wilson, the Razorbacks have also offered Joe T. Robinson athlete Quentin Murphy, Little Rock Parkview safety Omarion Robinson, Marion offensive lineman Carius Curne, North Little Rock safety Keytrone Green and Warren wide receiver Antonio Jordan.

Murphy plays quarterback and will likely head elsewhere with Wilson already on board at Arkansas. In fact, he actually announced a commitment to Ole Miss last month, but was told the Rebels weren’t ready to accept a commitment from a 2025 quarterback yet. Robinson is a top-100 recruit with numerous Power Five offers, while Curne is starting to explode with four SEC offers in the past two months, with Georgia being the latest.

Arkansas Football 2025 Targets From Elsewhere

Of course, Arkansas football is also after several top recruits from outside the state, as well.

Included among Saturday’s visitors for the Hogwild Hangout was defensive end Lance Jackson, the younger brother of current Arkansas defensive end Landon Jackson. He’s a top-200 prospect from Pleasant Grove High in Texarkana, Texas, who has offers from the likes of Alabama, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Texas and many others.

The Razorbacks also welcomed a few other touted recruits from bordering states, including defensive end Alexander Shieldnight from Oklahoma, offensive lineman Devin Harper from Louisiana and running back Markeylin Batton from Texas.

Shieldnight goes to Wagoner High in the Sooner State and already has offers from the two top in-state programs, Oklahoma and Oklahoma State.

Harper stands 6-foot-5, 295 pounds and attends Captain Shreve High School in Shreveport, La., where he’s earned a four-star rating and offers from the likes of Alabama, Georgia, LSU, Texas and several others.

Batton isn’t as heralded as those two, but he actually picked up an offer from Arkansas during the Hogwild Hangout. It’s his second Power Five offer, with Texas Tech being his first.

He hasn’t posted about it on social media yet, but Hogville’s Otis Kirk reported that four-star linebacker Elijah Melendez would make the trip from Florida for the event, too. Playing for Osceola High in Kissimmee, Fla., he has offers from Alabama, Georgia, LSU and many others.

Another 2025 prospect to keep an eye on is wide receiver Jaden Nickens out of Millwood High in Oklahoma City. Ranked as high as No. 88 overall by 247Sports, he included Arkansas in his top eight on Saturday. Of course, much like Shieldnight, the Razorbacks are going head-to-head with the two Sooner State schools – Oklahoma and Oklahoma State.

Check out some highlight of 2025 Arkansas football commit Marcus Wimberly:


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