By Justin Braden
Fort Smith, AR –
RaSean Clark is known for big shots on the basketball court, but right now he is working for a shot at a college football scholarship.
The 6-foot tall, 170-pound wide receiver has made a name for himself on the field at Northside over his career, but it is evident that the young man is well-rounded in his talents as an athlete, as he tells stories of basketball, football, and even fishing.
“I really like to go fishing. I catch like 6 – 7 pounders. If I don’t get a (football) offer, I’m going to try do fishing.”
Fish is not the only thing this young man can catch. In 2023, he hauled in about everything that was thrown his way on the football field, trying to make the most of a senior year that saw his team trying to overcome adversity.
Northside finished the season (1-9, 1-5 in Region 7A Central). In their first season after being moved up a classification from 6A to 7A, they struggled, but the competition difference between 6A and 7A is significantly different, and with a new head coach, and a new offensive coordinator, the Grizzlies failed to put enough points on the scoreboard.
Clark, in the final semester of his senior year, has thrown himself into the recruiting mix as a receiver as much as he can, attending football camps across Arkansas, where regional talent from Memphis was there competing with him, and he felt that the added talent around him in those camps increased his value on the field.
“When we scrimmaged at camp that really helped my game out because I was playing against older guys. We used to be out there all day. We were against Memphis teams, and the QB would throw it to me, and I could go get it every time.”
One of Clark’s biggest plays of the season came on a quick post route. Northside’s offense was under fire all season. Its quarterback had little time to get the ball away with the Grizzlies’ offensive line outsized in the new regional classification.
On that touchdown play, he catches the ball over the middle after about two seconds of the play developing, before he cuts back across the field and outraces the entire defense to the end zone.
Plays like that showcase the big play capabilities of the young wide receiver, his versatility lined up at wideout and in the slot, and his honesty too, when he recounts it in the interview.
“I’m not going to lie, right before that play, I had dropped a pass. But then, I’m running, and I hit the post, and he just throws it to me, and I just catch it, and touchdown.”
RaSean will have success at whatever he focuses on, and his hard work ethic has been instilled in him by his family – his parents who he describes as having sacrificed their time and money to make better opportunities for him, and siblings who are off building their lives in college right now.
“In college, I would try to study entrepreneurship or business and try to make my own brand, and focus on that, and see how much I can make from that. I’m trying to make it because I feel like my parents work too much, so I’m just trying to give that all back to my parents one day.”
Opportunity has yet to knock on RaSean’s door in the form of a scholarship offer to play collegiate football, but he is not sitting around waiting for someone else to make a door for him. He is building a door himself, and after his high school team did not have many college recruiters look their way last year, he has not been left with much of a choice if he wants a next-level opportunity.
“If I get an offer, my parents would be so happy for me. That would make me so happy. I would feel more clear about myself, and my future. I keep my grades up, trying to make that happen.”
RaSean has proved throughout his career as a student-athlete that there is nothing that he
cannot overcome, and one day soon, his hard work and dedication to crafting his skills is going to pay off, and until then, he is going to keep building doors and knocking them down himself if no one comes knocking.
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