Junior RB sets high goals for 2010

When a high school player rushes for 13 yards a carry in any league, colleges take notice. It's why 2012 running back Malin Jones has five offers, including one from Iowa. Come inside as HI's Josh Harvey talks with the junior.

When a high school player rushes for 13 yards a carry in any league, colleges take notice.

It's why Joliet Catholic's 6-foot-2, 190-pound junior running back Malin Jones has multiple offers.

"At this point, Iowa, Illinois, Toledo, Northwestern, and Louisville have all offered me," said Jones to HawkeyeInsider.com. "I would say that Iowa and Northwestern are the schools that are standing out to me the most right now. Also showing interest is Boston College, Wisconsin, Purdue, and Nebraska."

Coming off a sophomore season where he rushed for nearly 1200 yards and found the end zone 19 times, Jones had lofty expectations and goals in 2010.

"I wanted to have no loss fumbles and get over 1600 yards on the season. Right now, I have fumbled twice, but we have gotten both back," said Jones who eclipsed 750 yards last week on the season. "I don't know how many exact carries we have, but we split them between three guys. One who is already a future D-1 player and another who I think will be D-1."

So what is it about Iowa and Northwestern that has separated them from the pack?

"Obviously both schools came at me early and I really feel wanted there. Both places there is an opportunity for me to hit the field early and the coaches are telling me there is spots in their offensive scheme for me.

"They are definitely both up and rising schools as well. Iowa is already there compared to Northwestern, but is improving. Northwestern is getting better each and every year and their academics for student athletes is second to none. I would consider both top notch schools."

Listing playing time as his biggest factor in a future decision, the 2012 recruit was able to hit up Iowa recently on an unofficial visit.

"I went to the Penn State/Iowa game. It was pretty lively there. Tailgaters were out at 11 A.M. for a 7 P.M. game. That was crazy. It's a city where that's pretty much all the athletics they have, so Iowa players are like pros.

"The fans were chanting, 'come to Iowa.' It was pretty cool. They were yelling at us and trying to talk to us."

Jones has scored a total of nine touchdowns this year. The Hilltoppers are 7-1 on the year and are ranked No. 8 in the state according to MaxPreps. They have one game tomorrow night before starting post season play.

"I really think we can make it to state. I know a lot of guys say that, but I think it's the truth. We beat a lot of ranked teams this season. We lost a nail-biter to Carmel, who was a favorite in 7A this year," said Jones. "Our offense is clicking, our defense is clicking, you can't ask for more."

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