Arkansas Inks No. 1 JUCO Player In The Nation

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Arkansas men’s basketball head coach Mike Anderson announced Friday that 6-5 guard Jaylen Barford has signed a National Letter of Intent (NLI) to join the Razorbacks and will transfer from Motlow State Community College for the 2016-17 season. Barford is ranked as the No. 1 junior college transfer in the 2016 class, with a 94 percent composite rating by 247Sports.

At Motlow State Community College (Tenn.), Barford averaged 20.6 points, 7.1 rebounds, 5.1 assists and 2.4 steals per game as a freshman. He shot 52.5 percent from the field and 70.1 percent from the foul line. Out of 27 games played, Barford scored in double figures 26 times, including 17 20-plus-point games, five double-doubles with rebounds and one double-double with assists.

After his impressive freshman season for the Bucks, he was named to the All-TCCAA First Team and earned Honorable Mention NJCAA All-American recognition. So far in his sophomore year, Barford has exploded out of the gate, averaging 29 points, 7.4 rebounds four assists and two steals per game through the first seven contests. For his efforts, he has been named NJCAA National Player of the Week in back-to-back weeks.

Originally from Jackson, Tennessee, Barford attended South Side High School, where he was the West Tennessee Player of the Year as a senior. He led his team to the Class AA State Championship while averaging 22.5 points, three assists and three steals per game. He also earned the District 14-AA Player of the Year award, as well as multiple All-District and All-Region honors.

He is joined by Louisiana prep star Adrio Bailey and Little Rock native Daryl Macon as the first three signees for the 2016-17 season.

Coach Anderson on Barford
“Jaylen is a young man we identified early in high school and we’ve seen him grow into one of the best junior college guards in the country,” said Anderson. “He’s an explosive athlete with great size and quickness for a guard and will continue to blossom in the #Fastest40 Minutes of Basketball. He’s an impact player and has that competitive greatness you must possess in order to have a chance to be an elite player. Jaylen has incredible vision, makes his teammates around him better and is like a coach on the floor that takes command. He’s a first-class individual and comes from a great family. Arkansas fans will really enjoy watching him grow as a Razorback.”

For more information on Arkansas men’s basketball, follow @RazorbackMBB on Twitter.