It didn’t take Mataio Soli to close his recruiting.
After narrowing his list of 50 schools to three, the Douglas County High all-state defensive end quickly made up his mind about his college future.
During his official visit to Arkansas over the weekend, Soli committed to sign with the SEC school during December’s early signing period.
“It’s just the best fit for me, and I knew it once I got there,” Soli said following Monday’s workout. “I been in contact with their coaches and they showed me a lot of love during my visit.”
Last week, Soli had narrowed his choices to Auburn, Florida and Arkansas. He was scheduled to do an official visit at Auburn this coming weekend.
The 6-foot-3, 227-pound four-star recruit says his recruitment is now over.
“He just wants to concentrate on football,” said Soli’s father, Junior, who was an All-SEC nose guard for the Razorbacks.
The younger Soli said he didn’t feel any pressure to pick Arkansas, where his mother, Karen is also a graduate of the Fayetteville school. She is from Sparkman, Ark., which is about four hours from the campus.
“There was no pressure because my family supported me throughout all of this,” Mataio Soli said. “I just nada home feeling about it. Arkansas was big on my list. To be committed and finally be done with the recruiting process is great.”
Soli, who made 77 tackles including 18 tackles for loss as junior, was named to the all-state team and chosen the Douglas County Sentinel Defensive Player of the Year.
So far, Arkansas has six commitments for the 2019 class. Oral commitments are non-binding, but Soli says he is fully committed to signing.
Soli is three classes from graduating and plans on being an early enrollee in January.
“I just want to get a head start and participate in spring drills,” Soli said. “Right now, I want to have a good senior season and lead our team back into the playoffs.”
He is the second county player to make a Div. I commitment. Earlier this month, Chapel Hill cornerback Miles Richardson committed to Wofford, a FCS school in South Carolina.