Recruit Profile: Nick Jones

TBS visited with a bright young basketball recruit from Washington about how his season went and what his future plans are. The early basketball signing period may be months away, but the battle for the top prospects is well underway.

Nick Jones, a 6'9" 225-pound forward from Skyline High School in Issaquah, Washington, just finished his junior season and is now looking to improving his game getting ready for next year and the next level.

Jones averaged around 14 points a game, nine rebounds and two or three blocked shots.

"We have another guy who outscored me," he said. "But I'd say I was pretty much the focal point of the offense this year, but next year for sure."

Nick thinks that shot-blocking is his best basketball asset. Defensive zeal is one thing that his high school coach stressed.

"I really like defense better than offense," said Jones. "I really like blocking shots – that's probably my favorite part."

Jones said that he likes to play inside, but said he can also hit the mid-range jumper. He knows that he'll have to continue to work on his offensive game if he wants to take it to the college level.

"I'm going to be working on my back-to-the-basket game," said Jones. "I'm good at passing out of a double team and those two compliment each other. When the post threat is there and draws a double that allows me to help my team.

"I'm also going to look to shoot more next year and take my game farther outside. I also want to improve my overall athleticism."

Jones is a smart basketball player who does what it takes to improve his game so that he can better help his team. He is also smart off the court. He maintains a 3.75 GPA and is currently taking an SAT prep class before taking the test later this year. The test shouldn't pose a problem though as he recently scored in the 99th percentile on a PSAT he took.

"Academics are huge to me," he said. "I'm definitely considering BYU, but I'm keeping my options open. I don't know which schools are for real right now. But BYU is definitely high on my list because I'm definitely going on a mission."

Jones said that he had spoken to coaches from BYU, Utah and Utah State and all said that mission plans work best when they don't interrupt schooling and basketball. He will turn 19 a month after he graduates from high school, but he has not decided if he'll go straight on a mission or attend school for a year.

"To me it just seems more logical to go and then come back and then play," said Jones.

He didn't have a preference on where he'd like to serve, but did feel that a foreign mission would give him a greater perspective of things. In fact, if a foreign mission didn't happen he'd like to look into a study abroad program.

Because of his mission plans, Jones said that Honor Code wouldn't be an issue and would actually be a reason that he would choose BYU.

"Being a member of the Church and all, BYU offers things that are non-academic and non-basketball that are really tough for any other school to match."

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