January 30, 2023

Former Florida Gators offensive lineman Joshua Braun was signed by University of Arkansas coach Sam Pittman while he was in Georgia, and the Hogs are hoping he does the same after visiting Fayetteville this weekend .

Brown, 6-6, 335 pounds, played at Suwannee High School in Live Oak, Fla. and was a consensus 4-star prospect. He was ranked the nation’s No. 11 offensive tackle by ESPN for the class of 2020.

He reversed his promise to Florida and former coach Dan Mullen after Pittman was hired at Arkansas. He announced plans to move from Gainesville on Oct. 18 after playing in 11 games as a freshman and 13 games as a sophomore, including seven starts, and in two games this fall.

Braun has received scholarship offers from Penn State, Oklahoma State, Texas Tech, Central Florida, Duke and others after announcing his transfer.

As a graduate transfer, Braun was able to enter the transfer portal before December 5th, the date when all other FBS transfers can officially enter the portal.

Braun, his wife Azucena and his parents are expected to begin his official visit to Fayetteville today.

“Me and my family are really excited to come to Arkansas and see all that it has to offer,” Braun said. “My wife is probably the most excited. My relationship with Coach Pittman began in high school when he recruited me to Georgia. So when he got that [head coaching] job in Arkansas, I freaked out about Florida and have kind of been following her ever since. I played Arkansas my freshman year and that game had hit Coach Pittman, so he didn’t travel.

Braun explained why his wife is keen to visit Fayetteville.

“We heard Arkansas is a beautiful place and she’s a country girl,” Braun said. “So it’s her thing. She’s from Suwannee County. She was born and raised in North Florida.”

Braun is also familiar with Razorback offensive line coach Cody Kennedy, who was a 2018 graduate assistant at Georgia.

“Coach Kennedy was GA at Georgia when I was recruited,” Braun said. “He’s a great coach. I’m really looking forward to building the relationship further and just looking forward to getting to know him and the boys this weekend.”

Braun’s brother Parker was a first-team All-ACC offensive lineman at Georgia Tech in 2017 and 2018 before becoming a graduate transfer starter at Texas in 2019. His brother Trey was also an offensive lineman at Georgia Tech from 2011 to 2015.

Braun’s parents were Army athletes in the late 1980s—his father, Mike, was a linesman, while mother, Karen, was a basketball team captain.

Besides the natural beauty, Braun says he sees a lot to like about Arkansas.

“The facilities are top-tier in the SEC, which means they are among the best facilities in the country,” Braun said. “The fan base, the alumni network in Arkansas is just great and you couldn’t ask for better fans. Woo Pig Sooie is known across the country.”

He also said he believes Arkansas is headed in the right direction and that the opportunity to be part of the program is compelling.

“I think they are ready and in a good position to really step on the gas next year,” said Braun. “As you have seen this year, the [SEC] The West seems more open than the East at this point, so I think Arkansas has a good chance of filling that gap.”

Four of Arkansas’ losses during the 6-6 season totaled nine points.

“Arkansas won 6-6 this year, that doesn’t mean they don’t have the skills to be good next year,” Braun said. “So the ball is bouncing in different ways and Arkansas is at 9-3, maybe 10-2.”

Braun has a bachelor’s degree in traditional courses and is aiming for a master’s degree in business administration. After entering the portal, he made unofficial visits to the state of Florida and central Florida, and intends to visit others officially after his trip to Fayetteville.

“I think the week after Arkansas I’ll be going to FSU and then I’ve got a few more that I’m building up,” he said.

The Hogs are also expected to receive signings from offensive lineman Joey Su’a, quarterback Malachi Singleton and tight end Jaden Hamm for official visits this weekend.

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