Courtesy of Donovan Broadnaux

Arkansas Signs Alabama Prep Star C.J. Jones

In his weekly recruiting column for Hawgs Illustrated, Dudley E. Dawson chats with new Arkansas basketball signee C.J. Jones (6-5, 180), who averaged 28.5 points this past season for Birmingham, Ala., Central Park Christian. This story is free and courtesy of the NWA Chevy Dealers. Click the banner to learn more.

Birmingham, Ala. Central Park Christian has known Arkansas head coach Mike Anderson for a long time and now will get the opportunity to play for him.

Jones (6-5, 180) inked signed his national letter-of-intent Wednesday morning to become the fifth member of the 2016 recruiting class.

He has known the Arkansas coach and Razorback assistant T.J. Cleveland since he was in the second grade and Anderson was the head coach at UAB.

“First of all, I just want to thank God because without him none of this would have been possible,” Jones said. “I also want to think my family and friends and my AAU coaches who helped me get to this spot.

“I can’t wait to get to Arkansas and play for Coach Anderson and Coach T.J. Cleveland. I know they are going to treat me like family and help me continue my development.

“I have known Coach Anderson since I was 4 and he was the head coach at UAB.”

Jones, whose dad Chad played for UAB in 1996-97, is coming off a senior season in which he averaged 28.5 points, 8.3 rebounds, 5.9 assists and 4 steals per game for a 16-10 squad.

“I think the best thing I do right now is shoot the basketball,” Jones said. “I can shoot it from 3, I have a good mid-range game and I can get to the basket when I want to do so.

“I also love playing defense and I know that is big with Coach Anderson. I still need to work on my ball handling, but I am putting in the time.”

He finished with one of his best games of the season while leading Central Park Christian to the semifinals of the National High School Christian School Tournament.

“He was on fire,” Central Park head coach Donovan Broadnaux said. “He was 6-of-6 in the first quarter, including an 85-footer that went in at the buzzer. I think he had like 35 or something, but he was just showing it all off that game like he has for us all year.”

Jones got a chance to watch Arkansas (16-16) play several times on television this past season.

“I know they didn’t win as many games as they would have like to do, but they had a lot of close losses,” Jones said. “I think we are going to have a very good team next season, one that will get back to the (NCAA) Tournament.”

He joins the Razorbacks’ four fall signees in a trio of junior college stars in Jaylen Barford (6-5, 210), Daryl Macon (6-4, 180) and Arlando Cook (6-9, 215) as well as  Campti, La., Lakeview high school standout Adrio Bailey (6-8, 205).

“I’m really excited about the chance to play with (current Razorbacks) Dusty Hannahs and Moses Kingsley and the other guys next season,” Jones said. “I think with the guys coming back and the recruits we have coming in, we have a chance to get back into the (NCAA) tournament and do some damage."

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