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Arkansas receiver to transfer to USC

January 03, 2007|Gary Klein | Times Staff Writer

Damian Williams, a wide receiver from Arkansas who was selected to the Southeastern Conference all-freshman team this season, will transfer to USC and is in the process of enrolling for the spring semester, his father said Tuesday.

Williams, 6 feet 1 and 188 pounds, caught four passes for 62 yards in a 50-14, season-opening loss to USC at Fayetteville, Ark. He finished the season with 19 receptions for 235 yards and two touchdowns.

Last month, Williams was given his release to transfer from Arkansas Coach Houston Nutt.

Under NCAA rules, Williams must sit out a year before he is eligible.

David Williams said his son, who had chosen Arkansas over Florida last February, was contacted by several schools after he was given his release.

"We let Damian make his own decision," his father said in a phone interview. "We're concerned about his education, and we also want him to go where he develops to become the best player he can become."

Williams was one of four star players from Springdale High in Arkansas, including quarterback Mitch Mustain, who signed with the Razorbacks in February after Springdale's coach, Gus Malzahn, was hired as Arkansas' offensive coordinator.

Under Malzahn, Springdale had run a wide-open offense, but the Razorbacks, with Heisman Trophy runner-up Darren McFadden leading the way, were ground-oriented this season and finished 10-4.

Parents of three players, including Williams', met with Arkansas Athletic Director Frank Broyles in mid-December to voice concerns, and Williams decided to transfer soon after the meeting.

gary.klein@latimes.com

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