Arkansas added an interesting dynamic to its rivalry with Mizzou.
Hickman star Jimmy Whitt committed to Arkansas on Tuesday, choosing the Hogs over Missouri, Illinois, Marquette and SMU. Arkansas, which is run by former Missouri coach Mike Anderson, steals arguably the top point guard in the state right under MU’s nose.
“It’ll be fun to see where it goes now that I committed to Arkansas, definitely how to see how it is from the other side,” Whitt said of the rivalry. “Because I’ve seen it from the Mizzou side and everything. So actually to experience for myself will be a fun experience.”
Whitt said he had a strong relationship with Missouri men’s basketball coach Kim Anderson, even though Anderson was hired in late April of this year. The former Central Missouri coach made it clear he wanted the Hickman basketball star.
” I got a call from him saying he accepted the job at Mizzou and everything,” the senior guard said. “They had been recruiting me hard and everything. I think they recruited me just as hard as Arkansas. Those are probably the top schools that recruited me the hardest.”
Whitt originally had five official visits planned this fall. However after a trip to Arkansas last weekend, he said the draw of Mike Anderson’s program was too good to pass up. He committed to the Hogs days later.
This is just the latest Columbia product to leave the state. Recent stars like Ricky Kreklow, Travis Jorgenson and Nick Norton all left for other schools. Whitt is perhaps the most-hyped prospect from the Kewpies program since Lance Harris, who left Mid-Missouri for Kansas State in 2003.