Arkansas football ended its recruiting slump in style, breaking out with a pair of home runs – the second of which was a commitment from Selman Bridges.
The four-star cornerback and top-50 overall prospect announced his commitment to the Razorbacks over Texas, TCU and USC on Friday. He is the 16th member of Arkansas’ 2024 recruiting class.
His announcement came mere moments after four-star running back Braylen Russell picked the Razorbacks over South Carolina and Tennessee, making them 2 for 2 on the day after starting the month just 1 for 8.
After Friday, the three players Arkansas has reeled in easily overshadow the five it has missed out on since July 1 because on top of Bridges and Russell, the Razorbacks have also landed top-100 wide receiver Ashton Bethel-Roman.
A consensus top-200 recruit at Lake Belton High School in Temple, Texas, Bridges is ranked as high as No. 50 overall by 247Sports, which also rates him as the sixth-best cornerback in the class.
ESPN ranks him 68th overall, plus he checks in at No. 75 in the 247Sports Composite, No. 76 in the On3 Consensus, No. 129 on Rivals and No. 189 on On3.
The addition of Bridges and Russell provided a nice boost to the Razorbacks’ already solid class. They now are now inside the top 20 across the board and ranked as high as No. 14 by 247Sports. The group also checks in at No. 15 in the On3 Consensus, No. 17 in the 247Sports Composite and No. 18 on Rivals.
The Recruitment of Selman Bridges
Listed at 6-foot-3 on most outlets and 6-foot-4 on Rivals, Selman Bridges – who also plays basketball and runs track – is very tall for a cornerback. Couple that size with his athleticism and you get a premier recruit.
However, it wasn’t until last summer that a Division I school first extended a scholarship. That came from Texas Tech and somewhat got the ball rolling, but he still had just eight FBS offers midway through his junior season.
Most of those were from in-state programs – Texas Tech, UTSA, Baylor, TCU and SMU – and some mid-tier Power Five programs like Arizona State, Arizona and Vanderbilt.
Following the season, in which he earned all-area and second-team all-district honors for racking up 46 tackles, six pass breakups and two interceptions (including one returned for a score), things exploded for Bridges.
A whopping 17 more schools – all from the Power Five – jumped on board with offers, including big-name programs like USC, Oklahoma, Texas, Oregon and others before Arkansas pulled the trigger on Jan. 24. In the weeks afterward, Alabama, Tennessee, LSU and Ole Miss also threw their hats into the ring, and he was invited to play in the Adidas All-American Bowl.
With defensive backs coach and co-defensive coordinator Marcus Woodson leading the way, the Razorbacks secured one of his three official visits last month. He came to Fayetteville the weekend of June 16 after checking out TCU a week earlier. The Texas visit came a week later.
Those three schools, plus USC, made up his top four, but it became clear this week that Arkansas was the leader in Bridges’ recruitment – which he confirmed with Friday’s commitment.
Historic Aspect for Arkansas Recruiting
It’s not every day that Arkansas football lands a recruit as highly ranked as Selman Bridges. In fact, he is one of its best during the modern recruiting rankings era.
Since 2000, which is as far back as the 247Sports Composite rankings go, the Razorbacks have signed 19 top-100 recruits out of high school. Bridges is the second top-100 commit in this class, as Little Rock Mills defensive end Charleston Collins checks in at No. 91.
Assuming he remains at his current ranking of No. 75, not only will Bridges be the 21st player on that list, but he’d be the 11th-highest ranked of the group.
Only one-third of those top-100 recruits have come from out of state, with Bridges being the fourth-highest ranked of that group. He trails only Ahmad Carroll (No. 14), Alex Collins (No. 40) and Lawrence Richardson (No. 58).
Considering the only Texan in that group is Richardson, Bridges is currently the second-highest ranked player Arkansas has landed from the Lone Star State – which is traditionally its most important recruiting ground. He is the first top-75 player from the state of Texas to commit to Arkansas while in high school since Richardson did so in the class of 2000.
It’s also worth noting that Bridges is the fourth-highest ranked defensive back to pick Arkansas, trailing only Carroll, Darius Winston (No. 24) and Richardson.
Finally, if both Bridges and Collins remain in the top 100 of the 247Sports Composite, it’ll be the seventh time the Razorbacks have landed two such players in the same class. Their record is four, which was way back in 2001, and in the other five years – 2000, 2006, 2013, 2014, 2016 – they landed two.
Here’s a full list of top-100 prospects to sign with (and commit to) Arkansas football:
|Player||Year||POS||High School||Ranking in 247Sports Composite|
|1. Mitch Mustain||2006||QB||Springdale (Ark.)||No. 9|
|2. Ahmad Carroll||2001||CB||Atlanta (Ga.) Douglass||No. 14|
|3. McTelvin Agim||2016||DE||Hope (Ark.)||No. 20|
|4. Darius Winston||2009||CB||Helena-West Helena (Ark.)||No. 24|
|5. Darren McFadden||2005||RB||NLR (Ark.) Oak Grove||No. 32|
|6. Alex Collins||2013||RB||Fort Lauderdale (Fla.) South Plantation||No. 40|
|7. De’Arrius Howard||2001||RB||West Memphis (Ark.)||No. 47|
|8. Lawrence Richardson||2000||CB||Galveston (Texas) Ball||No. 58|
|t-9. Shawn Andrews||2001||OL||Camden (Ark.) Fairview||No. 71|
|t-9. Brey Cook||2011||OL||Springdale (Ark.) Har-Ber||No. 71|
|11. Selman Bridges||2024||CB||Temple (Texas) Lake Belton||No. 75|
|12. Hunter Henry||2013||TE||Little Rock (Ark.) Pulaski Academy||No. 80|
|13. Bijhon Jackson||2014||DT||El Dorado (Ark.)||No. 81|
|14. Damian Williams||2006||WR||Springdale (Ark.)||No. 82|
|15. Jeb Huckeba||2001||LB||Searcy (Ark.) Harding Academy||No. 85|
|t-16. Bo Mosley||2000||CB||Osceola (Ark.)||No. 90|
|t-16. Brian Wallace||2014||OL||St. Louis (Mo.) Christian Brothers College||No. 90|
|18. De’Anthony Curtis||2008||CB||Camden (Ark.) Fairview||No. 91|
|19. Charleston Collins||2024||DT||Little Rock (Ark.) Mills||No. 94|
|20. Tony Ugoh||2002||OL||Houston (Texas) Westfield||No. 99|
|21. Devwah Whaley||2016||RB||Beaumont (Texas) Central||No. 100|
Arkansas Football Commits in Class of 2024
- DE Kavion Henderson — Leeds (Ala.) — Nov. 6, 2022
- DT Dion Stutts — Memphis (Tenn.) University School — March 11, 2023
- NOTE: Stutts tragically died in an ATV accident on June 13.
- ATH Noreel White — Ocean Springs (Miss.) St. Martin — March 13, 2023
- ATH JuJu Pope — Batesville (Miss.) South Panola — April 8, 2023
- QB KJ Jackson — Montgomery (Ala.) St. James — April 9, 2023
- CB Jaden Allen — Aledo (Texas) — April 21, 2023
- DE Charleston Collins — Little Rock (Ark.) Mills — April 21, 2023
- WR Courtney Crutchfield — Pine Bluff (Ark.) — April 21, 2023
- CB Tevis Metcalf — Birmingham (Ala.) Parker — April 22, 2023
- ATH Jadan Baugh — Decatur (Ga.) Columbia — May 19, 2023
- ATH Ahkhari Johnson — Texarkana (Texas) Pleasant Grove — June 14, 2023
- WR CJ Brown — Bentonville (Ark.) — June 15, 2023
- OL Kobe Branham – Fort Smith (Ark.) Southside – June 26, 2023
- OL Zuri Madison — Lexington (Ky.) Frederick Douglass — June 27, 2023
- WR Ashton Bethel-Roman — Missouri City (Texas) Ridge Point — July 4, 2023
- RB Braylen Russell – Benton (Ark.) – July 14, 2023
- CB Selman Bridges – Temple (Texas) Lake Belton – July 14, 2023
More coverage of Arkansas football and Arkansas recruiting from BoAS…