Jones has U-M on Top; Still Weighing Options

Orlando (Fla.) Oak Ridge linebacker Jonathan Jones has made no secret of his strong affinity for Michigan… an affinity that grew even stronger after his recent visit. Despite that he isn’t in any rush to make a decision.

Sam Webb:  Give me your overall impressions of your experience at Mich?

Jonathan Jones:  “It was amazing, amazing experience.  Definitely loved it and can’t wait to get back.  I’ve got a lot of family up in Detroit, so I got to see them and hang out with them and they definitely really pressing me to come back and possibly make that commitment.  The coaches were real great, the players were real great.  I just loved the new way that they are going.  Michigan can do some stuff, getting back to the old ways of Michigan and really turn the program back to where it was.”

Sam Webb:  Not many visits lasts as long as yours did.  What all did you do while you were there?

Jonathan Jones:  “I was only there for about three days, two nights.  The rest of the days I was there with my family.  The first few days, it was great.  The first day we went out and did a regular tour and everything, checked out the school itself plus seeing the football facilities.  That’s what we looked at first.  I met all the coaching staff, met all of them.  The second day, we looked real deep into the academics.  Some more of the recruits came in and I chilled with them.  The second day, it was looking at academics and checking out the education, going and seeing another tour, I looked at more of the college.  At night, I hanged out with the players and they took me out and showed me more of the campus and everything.  The next day, it was just a chill day.  I chilled with the players.  Jabrill Peppers is the guy up there and I was chilling with him basically all that day and until my aunt came and got me that night.”

Sam Webb: As far as players are concerned, who did you vibe with the most?

Jonathan Jones:  “I connected with Ian (Bunting).  He’s a tight end there.  I connected real close with him. He hit me up after everything and he was just like, hey, I’m going to be in contact with you. Everybody likes you here and hoping I’ll get back up.  I connected real good with him.  Jabrill Peppers, also, I connected real good with him.  There was another recruit there, Drew Singleton was with me and they were both from the same high school.  I was just vibing with them and everything.  There were so many people.  I stayed in the dorm with like five other players and I can’t remember all their names, but I know all of them are real good people and they looked after me while I was up there.”

Sam Webb: As far as dealing with the coaches, did they map out for you how they envision using you?

Jonathan Jones:  “Yeah, Coach Durkin, when we got there sat down and told me I was going to be in the middle position.  LBs in his system make huge plays, they’re the playmakers and the D-line, there is a hunkering huge beast that take on O-lineman blocks and get it in their selves and he wants me in that middle position, being a general out there on the field.”

Sam Webb: Did they talk to you about how many linebackers they were going to take?

Jonathan Jones:  “Not necessarily what they were going to take, but they went over…the only thing recruiting wise that I know is that they’re hitting Florida hard and New Jersey.  They’re hitting New Jersey hard too.  Those are the two places that they are recruiting pretty heavy and that they should have a lot of recruits coming out of Jersey and Florida.  Basically all the football towns, football states – Florida.  Also, they did tell me about the situation with how many linebackers they will have in the upcoming years.  They have four right now on scholarship and three of them are seniors.  Basically, when I get up there if I were to go up there, I would have a chance to early starter, not necessarily how many players they’re going to take, how many scholarships they have left and that stuff.  I really didn’t hear that.”

Sam Webb: It seems like someone is committing to Michigan every day.  Is the number of scholarships they have left something that is on your mind at all?

Jonathan Jones:  “Not really.  I’ll be honest when it comes to all my top schools.  Four years is a huge part of my life and I’m going to train that out and I’m not going to rush myself for any school.  If they want me then they’ll hold that position, but if it is like, well hey you got to take this or they’re going to give it up or something like that, then honestly that is not the school for me.  I want to go somewhere I’m celebrated and tolerated.  If you really celebrating and you really want me, you’ll hold that position.  Other than that, dudes are committing every day.  I’m going to be honest with you, I’m real pressed to go there.  There my leader most definitely, but it just wouldn’t be a wise decision to check out that school and leave all my other options unsettled.  That wouldn’t be wise for me, so that’s what I’m doing.”

Sam Webb: You mentioned your aunt picked you up, am I correct in assuming that your parents did not come with you on this trip?

Jonathan Jones:  “No sir.  They stayed here in Florida.”

Sam Webb: What is next for you as far as visits are concerned? Do you have any more planned for this summer or anything?

Jonathan Jones:  “No sir.  For this summer it is just football and getting better.  I’ve got The Opening in I want to say two weeks or so, so I’m training for that and after that I’ll keep training and get ready for my regular football season.  I might see the local, UCF, might go down to FAU, Miami, not saying I am but they’re right there, so there is a possibility that I could get to those schools.”

Sam Webb:  What is your top five at this point?

Jonathan Jones:  “Oklahoma, Michigan, Duke, Notre Dame and Stanford.”

Sam Webb: You think you will take officials to all five of those schools?

Jonathan Jones:  “Yes sir.”

Sam Webb: Are you going to be a guy that decides on signing day or are you going to try and get it done sooner than that?

Jonathan Jones:  “I’m really not sure.  It might be signing day, it might….I’m really not sure.  After I see all my official visits, I’m going to try and get those soon as possible, so it’ll probably be deep into my season or a little bit after my season I’ll make a decision.”

Sam Webb: When you sit down to make that choice what are going to be the most significant factors in that choice?

Jonathan Jones:  “Most significant is I’m a Christian, just where God wants me to go.  If it’s the right fit for God for me, his will where he wants me to go is #1.  Number two is education.  Education wise what they have to offer.  Number three, will I have a chance to play as a freshman.  Will that be on the table, will I be able to fight for that spot.  Number four, the coaches and the atmosphere.”

Sam Webb: Who is in your circle that you’re leaning on to help make this decision?

Jonathan Jones:  “I’m leaning on a lot of factors.  I’m leaning on God, my parents, coaches, and family members.  Basically God and my parents, the number one people I’m going to be learning on and asking questions.”

Sam Webb:  Give me your thoughts on Coach Harbaugh, what did you think of him?

Jonathan Jones:  “He’s the man with the plan most definitely but he’s not your regular head coach.  He is great to be honest with you.  He’s a cool crazy, not crazy like things that don’t make sense, but he thinks of crazy things that does make a lot of sense.  Also, his character, he’s not a regular head coach character.  He’s definitely going to have fun while he’s out there.  He’s definitely going to do what he wants to do, which is always the right thing and he’s outgoing and a real cool guy, but very vocal and crazy with the things he does.  He’s funny.”

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