Former Texas Longhorns center Jake Raulerson prefaced the announcement of his new destination with quite an understatement — “This has been on wide [sic] ride of an off season."
Once bound for the UCLA Bruins, Raulerson revealed on Thursday that he will finish his final two seasons of eligibility with the Arkansas Razorbacks. Last week, the news broke that Raulerson was denied admission into the MBA and Masters in Applied Economics programs at Westwood.
Then he received admission into SMU, according to his Twitter feed, but opted to continue to explore his options, which had dwindled in the time since he committed to UCLA.
With limited eligibility, Raulerson was looking for a high-quality program with the opportunity to contribute early. According to Arkansas Right, Raulerson found that in the Hogs:
Raulerson will have two years of eligibility remaining and could compete for a starting position at center immediately. Arkansas’ previous center, Mitch Smothers, graduated and the Hogs had been practicing with Frank Ragnow at center in the spring. Ragnow had been playing at guard, and if Raulerson is able to take the starting spot at center, Ragnow could stay at guard. Raulerson can also play guard as well.
It’s no secret that offensive line has been a major concern for the Hogs this offseason since the team is replacing three starters and recruiting along the line has been inconsistent. Raulerson’s arrival should at least help alleviate some of those concerns. If nothing else, it adds to quality depth along the line.
There’s certainly no love lost between Texas and Arkansas dating back to the heated SWC rivalry, but here’s hoping that Raulerson finds some success with Bert in his pig pen.