Tulsa Talent

The University of Arkansas is battling Texas A&M and Tennessee in the race to sign Tulsa Booker T. Washington tailback Felix Jones (6-0, 200, 4.4), who will visit Fayetteville on Jan. 21-23.

Anybody who thinks they have a good idea where Tulsa (Okla.) Booker T. Washington running back Felix Jones is going just needs to check themselves.

That's from Jones (6-0, 200, 4.4), recently named the Tulsa World Player of the Year for the state of Oklahoma, himself who is enamored with three schools and hasn't yet ushered a fourth out of the running for sure.

"I kind of laugh when somebody says Texas A&M leads or Arkansas leads or Tennessee leads or he's going to Oklahoma State," Jones said. "If I don't have a clue right now, how could anybody else. To me - until I get through with my visits and check everything out - how could I have a leader?"

Jones, who rushed for over 2,500 yards this season and a whopping 48 touchdowns for his 13-1 squad, has already been to Texas A&M for an official visit.

He will head to Tennessee this weekend (Jan. 14-16) and Arkansas (Jan. 23-25), but his situation with Oklahoma State and a possible visit there on Jan. 28-30 is clouded right now.

"Since the old coach left (Les Miles) and the new one (Mike Gundy) came in, they have tried to call a couple of times and I haven't been home," Jones said. "I guess I might still take a visit, but I am not really too sure about them the right now."

Jones, who rushed for 301 yards and six touchdowns in a single game this past season, is sure of the other three schools and what attracts him to Arkansas, Tennessee and Texas A&M.

"All of those schools have programs that are young and on the verge of being great," Jones said. "They all have coaches that are very good at what they do and have had a great deal of success. And they all have offenses which run the ball, but are also very balanced."

Jones says he has studied each school's depth chart as a matter of researching them all, but says it really won't matter who is already there and who is coming in the same class as him.

"I have a confidence in myself and never back down from a challenge," Jones said. "I think having other great backs there with me will not only help the team, but challenge me personally. It's all about the team, not about me. I just want to be a part of a winning team. I'm not a me-first kind of guy."

Tennessee is next up on the visit list and he will catch up with a old friend in former Booker T. Washington star and current Vols wideout Robert Meachum.

"He seems to have really enjoyed himself there, but I will have to see how it stacks up for me," Jones said. "You can't go a school just because you have friends there."

Arkansas has another one of his friends in former Hornets and current Razorback defensive end Michael Tate.

"He's told me how it is at Arkansas and how one of the few things they need is a game-breaking back," said Jones, whose junior season was cut short with a early injury. "He is pushing them hard."

Jones had a home visit with Arkansas head coach Houston Nutt back in December.

"I think he is just a great guy and a great coach, someone who will be around you and make you feel comfortable and not try to just be some coach who stays in his office," Jones said. "I'll tell you this much. I sure could see myself playing for him at Arkansas. That is one of the foremost things in my mind."

But he repeats - there is no leader.

"It's like a race where all the runners are coming to the finish line and you can't tell who is going to win," Jones said. "They are all equal in my eyes right now."

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