Hooten’s released its 29th annual football book previewing the state’s colleges and high schools ahead of this year’s football season.
University of Central Arkansas sophomore defensive lineman Logan Jessup graces the UCA version of the cover.
While the colleges aside from the University of Arkansas did not receive rankings, Hooten’s did give schools strengths and weaknesses.
UCA’s strengths listed are veteran quarterback (sixth-year senior Breylin Smith) and receivers (seniors Lujuan Winningham and Tobias Enlow, juniors Tyler Hudson and Jarrod Barnes, Mitchell Perkinson).
Listed weaknesses are inexperienced running backs (Kierre Crossley transferred to Arkansas-Pine Bluff).
The Bears will have sophomore Cameron Myers and redshirt freshman Marshun Douglas, who received several carries last season, returning this fall.
The other weakness listed for the Bears is cornerbacks. Robert Rochelle getting drafted by the Los Angeles Rams leaves UCA with juniors DeAndre Lamont, Wesley Anusiem and Kameryn Cuevas as the lead corners.
The Bears will compete in the ASUN-WAC Challenge this fall to compete for an automatic qualifier.
Hendrix fell by one point to Berry this spring in the Southern Athletic Association championship game, which was held at War Memorial Stadium in Little Rock.
Hooten’s lists the Warriors strengths and weaknesses in the trenches as the offensive line is viewed as a strength, returning all five starters, while the defensive line will feature three new starters.
As the book digs into the high school teams, class rankings are listed early as Conway is ranked sixth in Class 7A, while Vilonia also takes the sixth spot in Class 5A. Greenbrier ranks 13th in Class 5A and Quitman ranks 16th in Class 2A.
Six student-athletes are listed among each classification’s super teams.
Conway’s Manny Smith takes the running back spot on the Class 7A Super Team, while Ashton Waller is listed among the top defensive backs in 7A.
Greenbrier’s Josh Robinson gets the call on the offensive line on the Class 5A Super Team, while Panther Nick Huett is listed among the linebackers and Vilonia’s Seth Kirk is one of four DBs.
Quitman’s Will Litton is among four linebackers to make the Class 2A Super Team.
Both Vilonia quarterback Austin Myers and Conway’s Manny Smith are among the state’s top 50 recruits, according to Hooten’s with Myers coming in at 26 and Smith coming in at 43.
Hooten’s ranks Conway as the 7A Central’s No. 2 team behind reigning champion Bryant.
The Wampus Cats will feature five new starters on both sides of the ball and gets high points at the receivers and secondary positions, but a lack of depth hurts, according to Hooten’s.
Hooten’s ranks Vilonia second and Greenbrier third in the Class 5A West.
Vilonia returns seven starters on offense and defense, which Hooten’s lists as a plus, along with the Eagles’ skill positions.
Weaknesses listed for Vilonia are the kicking game and unproven defensive linemen.
Greenbrier returns seven on offense and six on defense.
Cooper Wilcox’s quarterback play is listed as a strength for the Panthers, along with receivers and linebackers.
Hooten’s points out inexperienced corners and interior offensive linemen could be a weakness for Greenbrier.
Mayflower was ranked 30th out of all 4A schools and was ranked fourth in Class 4-3A.
Mayflower returns all but one starter on offense and all but two starters on defense.
However, Hooten’s says the team is counting on too many sophomores, which is an area of weakness.
The Eagles’ “huge offensive line” is a plus, though.
Quitman gets a second-place nod in Class 4-2A behind last year’s surprise conference winner Bigelow.
Hooten’s says the Bulldogs boast improved team speed and talented sophomores, but a small senior class could hurt.
Conway Christian is coming off a winless season and for that, Hooten’s ranks the Eagles last in the 4-2A, while 32nd in Class 2A overall.
The defensive line is a positive, according to Hooten’s while an unproved quarterback could be a hindrance.
Season schedules for every high school in the state is listed at the back of the book.
Hooten’s football book can be purchased at local retail outlets, such as Walmart and Kroger.