football Edit

Elite DB Terrion Arnold trims list to five

Over 40 schools offered Tallahassee (Fla.) John Paul Catholic II defensive back Terrion Arnold, and he trimmed his list to 11 earlier this year, and now, as we enter the final stretch, one of the best in Florida is down to five.

The schools that were in play when his top 11 was released that have been eliminated are Florida State, Georgia Tech, Miami, Oklahoma, Tennessee and USC.

“It is down to Alabama, Florida, Georgia, LSU and Texas A&M,” said Arnold. “Those are my final five schools.”

In a normal year, that list could be a little different, but battling through COVID-19 as a top recruit, he got down to five SEC powers.

“This was extremely tough for me. So many schools are still recruiting me, and we aren’t able to take official visits or unofficial visits, so it made it that much tougher. COVID-19 really made this super-tough for me, and if I would have been able to get out and visit, do camps in the summer and all that like most do, this list could have been different.

“I just had to go off what I know, what I feel, and I still feel good about my five schools, but COVID-19 made this a lot tougher.”


The in-state Gators have had Arnold on campus the most. He has visited Florida five times, Alabama and Georgia twice, LSU once and he is planning to visit College Station in a couple of weeks.

Each school is in contact with Arnold daily and making their pitch. He likes what the Crimson Tide, Gators, Bulldogs, Tigers and Aggies have to offer.

ALABAMA: “The track record under coach Nick Saban really stands out. The way Alabama has been recruiting me from the jump does too. How they have laid out their plan to help with my brand, image and likeness too makes them that much more attractive. The competition at Alabama too is different. I would go against the best every day.”

FLORIDA: “I have been to Florida the most, so I am comfortable there. I have a strong relationship with coach Dan Mullen, coach English, and the whole defensive staff. They are peaking at the right time, they are close to playing for a national championship, and I really like their vision for me on and off the field. Plus, I'm a Florida boy, so that means something too.”

GEORGIA: “With Georgia, it is all about coach Kirby Smart. He has been very involved recruiting me, he talks to me a lot, he is a defensive coach and I really like the vision he has for me. He is from about 30 minutes from me, so we really relate and we both can see me dominating there.”

LSU: “LSU is DBU, and their track record speaks for itself. They produce defensive backs, they prepare guys for the NFL, and some greats have come through there. Playing my position, it is hard not to look at LSU.”

TEXAS A&M: “I have that connection with coach Jimbo Fisher. When he was at Florida State, we got to know each other and he started recruiting me then. He is at a big program in the SEC now, he is building that program back up and I just like the connection we have and what he is doing at Texas A&M.”

Arnold is “definitely” signing February 3, that has been his plan all along, so while watching others sign later this month, he will be pushing towards his own decision in 2021.

“I still have a lot to think about before I make my decision,” said Arnold. “I am going to visit each of the schools on my list again, continue to talk to the coaches and figure it out.

"There is no chance I commit early or sign early, so I am taking my time. I have been doing virtual visits, so those help, but it will come down to my heart. I am a follower of Christ, and He will lead me to my decision.

“I don't think it will be all that tough, because for me, this has always been about business. This is another business decision and I will follow my heart.”

Arnold made it clear Florida State hasn’t been completely eliminated even though the school just a few miles down the road is not on this list. He said another visit to the local school is a possibility.