For the second time in less than a week, East Carolina is set to add an SEC transfer to its football roster.
On Twitter May 7, Alabama cornerback Nigel Knott announced his commitment to the East Carolina football program. Tuesday morning, it’s now being reported that erstwhile Arkansas running back Chase Hayden is doing the same.
Hayden had entered the NCAA transfer database in mid-February.
As a graduate transfer, Hayden will be eligible to play immediately for the Pirates. He’ll also have another year of eligibility he can use in 2021 as well.
Sources: Former Arkansas RB Chase Hayden is transferring to East Carolina. He'll be eligible immediately in 2020 and have two seasons remaining. He's the former Mr. Football and Mr. Basketball in Tennessee. Huge get for coach Mike Houston and ECU. @RivalsPortal.
— Pete Thamel (@PeteThamel) May 12, 2020
A three-star 2017 signee, Hayden was rated as the No. 4 all-purpose running back in the country. He was also the No. 10 player regardless of position in the state of Tennessee. Only four recruits in the Class of 2017 for Arkansas football were rated higher than Hayden.
Through seven games of his true freshman season, Hayden was leading the Razorbacks in rushing with 326 yards. An injury in that seventh game, however, prematurely ended his 2017 season.
In his three seasons with Arkansas football, Hayden totaled 616 yards and five touchdowns on 130 carries. He also caught 16 passes for another 96 yards.
As Hayden played in just four games during the 2019 season. That will allow him to use a redshirt for last year. And that is how he will leave Fayetteville armed with two seasons of eligibility.
East Carolina is coming off a 4-8 football campaign in the first year under head coach Mike Houston. Since winning 18 games in 2013-14, the Pirates have won a combined 18 games the past five seasons.