Thursday, January 17, 2013
DE Jones not interested in one SEC suitor
By Dave Hooker
One SEC school appears to be out of the running for defensive end Chris Jones.
The No. 46 prospect in the country, who is committed to Mississippi State, told Florida coaches they need not visit him this week as previously planned. When asked why cancelled the visit, Jones said, "I wasn't interested."
Mississippi State DE commit Chris Jones recently climbed from No. 164 to No. 46 in the final ESPN 150/300 rankings.
Jones said he won't be taking a trip to Gainesville either. There had been speculation that he would take an official visit to Florida on Jan. 25.
Jones is still considering official visits to Ole Miss, Auburn and Alabama. However, he said those possible trips wouldn't affect his commitment. He recently relayed that message to Mississippi State's coaches.
"I told them if I do decide to visit other schools I'm going to stick with them," the four-star defensive end from Houston (Miss.) High said.
Jones will take his official visit to Mississippi State this weekend. Bulldog coaches will get a chance to remind Jones why he committed to them last summer. Jones said he loves the campus and a chance to help the program rebuild. He's also quite fond of the coaches.
"I fell in love with the coaching staff," Jones said. "They've got a great defense."
With strong, recent interest from several tradition-rich schools, Jones' recruitment has ramped up dramatically. It was relatively quiet until last fall.
Once, the defensive end was largely unknown. His name began popping up when he committed to Mississippi State in June. By the time the 6-foot-6, 260-pound prospect finished his senior season and was a standout during the practices leading up to the Under Armour All-America, college recruiters across the South were well aware of Jones.
That interest led many to wonder just how committed Jones is to the Bulldogs. The four-star prospect from Houston (Miss.) High certainly has more options now than when he committed.
For some, the newfound attention could be challenging. Jones seems to be doing just fine with it.
"It's all right," the No. 2 prospect in Mississippi said. "It's just how you handle it."
Jones had 73 tackles and 18 sacks last season. He is rated the No. 6 defensive end in the nation. He is State's highest-rated commitment in its 22-member class.