No Longer A Hidden Gem

While many prospects jump into the recruiting game right away, others fly under the radar until something happens to make them stand out of the crowd. Last weekend one in-state lineman showed he has the ability to be noticed this fall.

Hueytown, Ala.--Hueytown High's Keith Jones is not a player that has been well known to recruiting gurus so far this year, but the 6-5, 260-pound offensive line prospect made it known during Auburn's summer football camp this past weekend that he will be a player to keep a close eye on among the class of 2007.

The big and athletic offensive lineman says he got a very late start in football, but notes that hasn't diminished his passion for the game at all.

"I actually started playing football about five or six years ago," he explains. "I just picked it up. It seemed liked something fun to do and I just learned to love it."

Jones, who will be a second year starter for the Golden Gophers on the offensive line, turned in a 5.5 forty yard dash and a 5.0 pro agility shuttle time along with a solid performance in one-on-one drills at the camp.

Despite being his second year as a starter, Jones notes that this will be his first full season at tackle. "This will be my first year at offensive tackle, but I played there one game last year and I had about 10 pancakes."

The talented lineman, who notes he has a max bench press of 315-pounds and a max squat of 600-pounds, says that his strength on the field is his run blocking and that he would like to improve his skills in pass protection.

Jones says that he was very impressed with his initial camp experience. "It was great," he exclaims. "It was something new. This is the first camp I have come to. I got to meet a lot of guys.

"If I had to say something after this camp," he continues. "I would thank my coach, Coach Smith, for teaching me all of the techniques because everything he taught me we did out there and it was no problem."

Despite being a relative unknown in recruiting circles, Jones says he has gotten a good bit of attention from college coaches. "I have heard form Alabama, Auburn, Troy, Georgia Tech, Southern Mississippi, Memphis and a lot more," he notes. "I have got an offer from Georgia Tech."

Even with a long list of interested colleges pursing the big lineman, Jones says that there is one program that currently stands out.

"Auburn," he says when asked about a favorite. "Right now they are probably the highest on the chart. They have got a great coaching staff, and I feel like I can get better here as far as going to school and becoming a better athlete."

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