- Jared Shanker, ESPN Staff Writer
CLEVES, Ohio -- When it is time to make a decision, Jamarco Jones (Chicago/De La Salle) will be taking into account more than just football.
His most recent visit, to Ohio State earlier this month, gave him an idea of what life would be like in Columbus if he pledged to the Buckeyes in August, the month he plans to make a commitment.
“This was a chance to see what it’s like outside of football season and get to see what it’s like to be around the players,” said Jones, who was making his fourth visit to Ohio State. “The [players] love it there pretty much. Nobody had anything bad to say about it. And I had conversations about the [recruiting] process with the players. They said you got to pick what school is best for you and what’s most comfortable. It was really helpful.”
Jones spoke with a handful of Class of 2012 signees, including fellow Chicago-area lineman Tommy Schutt. He also spent time with several of the coaches, Urban Meyer and area recruiter Mike Vrabel among them.
Vrabel and Jones have built a solid relationship over the last year. The Buckeyes have been on Jones for quite some time, and Vrabel was at Jones’ school as often as possible during the months of December and January.
“He’s a great person,” Jones said of Vrabel. “He gives advice on more than just football [such as] academics and things I can work on because he’s a defensive lineman so he knows different tricks an offensive lineman could use.”
Ohio State is toward the top for Jones, although he is not making any list of favorites yet. The 6-foot-5, 285-pound Jones has more than a dozen offers with more coming seemingly every week. He does not want to cut his list with more teams coming in.
Jones is considering visits to Michigan, Michigan State and Wisconsin in the coming weeks and months. He will visit Florida for its spring game, and it will be his first time in Gainesville.
“The fan base, being around the players and coaches and to see what it’s like down there,” Jones said he is looking forward to on his Florida visit.
Jones, who could not participate at the Core 6 event in Chicago in January, was named the Ohio Core 6 event MVP on Sunday.