Arthur Brown, the 6-foot-1, 225-pound linebacker from East High School in Wichita (Kan.), has really only narrowed his choices down to 22 schools, says his mentor Brian Butler, who operates Potential Players (non-profit) and is handling Brown's recruiting affairs. The two have known each other since Brown was a ninth grader.
"As far as Arthur leaning to any school," Butler said, "everybody doesn't know what they are talking about. He has no favorites and is not a fan of any school. He just started watching football last year. He's got a list of 22 schools and he calls them on a bi-weekly basis.
"He's trying to build relationships to see who he really likes. There is no favorite in any way, shape or form, and that includes Oklahoma," Butler emphasized.
"This all just started," he said. "All of the info Arthur gets is from me. He's very non-committal. He will review and analyze something to the very end. He's very thorough. He's very detailed. He likes all the schools now."
Well, not quite all. But he does have 22 schools which he hopes to narrow down to 10 in September. They are LSU, Florida State, Florida, California, USC, UCLA, Miami, Alabama, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Colorado, Kansas, Kansas State, Rutgers, Notre Dame, Louisville, Auburn, Michigan and North Carolina.
"We are just in the second week of calling all these coaches all the time, "Butler said. "This just started. Myself, his parents and his little brother (Bryce Butler) are all involved.
"Bryce will be the No. 1 running back recruit in the nation next year," he said. "(Pete) Carroll, (Bob) Stoops and (Urban) Meyer all said that Bryce is the best tailback they have ever seen, period.
"We'll all narrow this down to a top ten schools in September," Butler said. "Oklahoma, Nebraska, Kansas, Kansas State and Colorado are the only schools Arthur has seen so far. When he gets his list to a top ten, he'll start taking official visits in September.
"And we're going to go on a summer tour beginning on July 18. It'll run through July 27 and we'll see LSU, Florida, Florida State, Miami, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Ole Miss and Alabama. Nine kids will be coming, including Chris Harper (Wichita Northwest) and Jaydan Bird (Andover Central), who'll be one of the top three linebackers in the country next year.
"All the schools tell me that Arthur is the No. 1 player on their board," Butler said. "Most want him as an outside linebacker although a few would like him to play inside. Most the schools that want him for inside are off the list because he wants to play on the outside. He doesn't want to get into the 245-250 pound range for a middle 'backer. He's 215 pounds and runs a 4.4 (forty). He likes it outside.
"He's got great side-to-side movement and is really good at coming off the edge," he said. "He reminds me of Lawrence Taylor. He plays more inside in high school, but he wants to play outside in college. He would tell you, 'I like being all over the place." He could even play strong safety or corner.
His team went 5-5 last year and they had the two best players in the state," Butler said. "What does that tell you about the competition? Wichita has some great players. Barry Sanders played at Wichita North.
"If I had to say any schools that were recruiting Arthur the hardest, I'd say Kansas State, USC, Miami and North Carolina. But they're all recruiting him hard and they all call me.
"We set this July summer tour up a while ago, so we'll be seeing some schools that aren't in his top 22," Butler said. "The tour was set long before he had a top 22, so it has nothing to do with his interest in some schools. But being able to see all these schools will have a bearing on where he takes official visits. He won't have to see some schools twice.
"It's possible he'll visit the schools in Los Angeles too - USC and UCLA. It's possible he might go to the Notre Dame/USC game. He likes Notre Dame too. That would be a great thing to see. And he likes Cal. I can't say that anything's probable. I don't want to go on record with that.
"If I had to bet a million dollars, I would say…"
Butler reports that Brown has approximately a 3.0 core GPA and a 17 ACT. "He doesn't need to retake it. He's qualified."