LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Friday was a big day for Arkansas football recruiting, the Razorbacks landing two top-5 in-state 2024 prospects.
A “package deal” of Pine Bluff native 4-star recruits in Mills defensive lineman Charlie Collins and Pine Bluff wide receiver Courtney Crutchfield, each of whom widely coveted across the SEC, pledge to the Hogs.
“It’s excitement because I get to put on for my state,” Collins said before making his commitment official. “I know for a fact that this upcoming season I’ll have fans from all over the state come to watch me play so I’ll just have my best foot forward.”
Imposing at 6’5 265, Collins has been one of the state’s premier defensive linemen between his sophomore season at Pine Bluff and junior year at Little Rock Mills. Last fall as a Comet, Collins racked up 124 tackles, 56 solo tackles, and 12 sacks over 12 games.
Choosing Arkansas over SEC likes of LSU, Georgia, and Alabama, the touted defensive end points to his recruitment by Arkansas head coach Sam Pittman and staff as a big reason why he’s deciding to join the Razorbacks.
“Before I made my decision I did my research,” Collins said. I went back and talked to players who even entered the portal, asked what their take was of Coach Pittman. I never heard anything bad of the man. I heard he was honest, truthful, an upstanding guy, that’s what he showed me from day one.”
Best friends and and practically cousins, Collins and Crutchfield committing simultaneously is no coincidence. The Pine Bluff natives made campus visits together and ultimately decided to stay home with a purpose.
“We came together and said, hey look, we’re going to stay home and make our state great again,” Collins said. “We can bring that spark back to Arkansas. That played a big role in me staying home.”
“I see a lot of guys from Louisiana stay at LSU, guys from Alabama stay at Bama or Auburn,” Collins continues. “We all see the legacy and dynasty they build at those schools. Who says Arkansas can’t do it. I want to stay home and put my state back on the map.”
Watch our full story to hear more about why Collins is calling the Hogs alongside his long-time friend Crutchfield.