Exclusive: Dawgs Make Impression on Jones

ATHENS – Georgia made its case for, arguably, the top uncommitted player on their recruiting list.

"The visit went well at Georgia," said Carver linebacker Jarvis Jones. "I hung out with players like Bruce Figgins (host), A.J. Green, Knowshon Moreno, Rennie Curran, and a lot of the guys on the team. I also hung out with all the coaches, commitments Michael Gilliard and Abry Jones, and top recruit Branden Smith, too. I got a great vibe from the coaches and the players, and I felt real comfortable over there this weekend."

That may be a key for Jones, who is no where closer to a decision on his college pick. Jones maintains that he will make his decision public on Signing Day in February.

"None of the players tried to sell Georgia to me or anything really," Jones said. "But they all told me that Georgia is a great place, they told me that the coaches really care for the players there, and that I would love it if I went there. All of the players that I hung out with were cool and they made me feel comfortable."

Jones was identified as one of the top prospect in Georgia during his team's run to the 2007 State Championship. A devastating hitter, Jones has enough athletic ability to star on Carver's basketball team, too. The Dawgs, however, want him as a linebacker – holding a spot for him for months now.

"Coach Jancek and I got a chance to sit down and talk for a while and he is a real cool guy," Jones said. "He broke things down for me. He talked about the depth chart, and he talked to me about how he would help me early if I signed with Georgia. He told me that he would send me a workout plan and some of the plays to work on over the spring, so I could be ready to compete for playing time at middle linebacker when I got there. We had a nice talk and he said a lot of good things to me."

Jancek was not the only coach to give Jones ample attention. It is the sort of thing Jones has grown accustomed to during recruiting, and Georgia did it's best to keep up.

"All of the coaches talked to me and spent a little time with me and Georgia has let me know that they want me there," Jones said. "They sent six coaches to see me the first day they were on the road, and I know I am a priority for them. It feels good that they are really coming after the top two players in Georgia – me and Branden Smith. Georgia wants the best and they feel that me and Branden are two of the best."

Smith and Jones would signify that Georgia still has the power to lock down the state's top players even after a year that did not live up to expectations. The Bulldogs have been facing seriously out-of-state competition for both Jones and Smith, but appear to be in the hunt to land both of them. Mark Richt tried to do so by having both players, and the rest of the recruits, over to his house during the weekend.

"Coach Richt is a great guy and he cares about his players," Jones observed. "Over at his house on Sunday, we ate lunch and talked about some things. We did not really talk about football or recruiting that much and that is cool. I met his family, he talked about helping his players become better men, and I can tell that he puts his players first for themselves, not as football players. That shows me a lot about Coach Richt."

Richt has been an amazing recruiting tool for the Bulldogs over the last few years. The Dean of SEC coaches will have to continue to keep his conference rivals at bay in order to land Jones.

"I had a real good vibe at Georgia and everything went real well," Jones said. "The visit this weekend definitely helped Georgia for me and my mom liked it too. She liked that it is close to home and how they take care of the players there. I thought the atmosphere was great, I got a good feel for the players, and I felt like I fit in real well there. We both liked it over there this weekend."

Georgia will have to knock out SEC rivals Florida and LSU and stop national powers Texas and USC to sign Jones.

"I am still looking at five schools and they are all real close to each other," Jones admitted. They are alls great schools and it is going to be a tough decision. I am going to take my time, pray about it, and make my decision on signing day."

Southern Cal will be by to visit Jones later this week, and the Bulldogs will continue to keep tabs on him as well.

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