Video interview by Josh Newkirk
ORLANDO, Fla. -- With the 2016 recruiting close to being wrapped up, the pursuit for elite 2017 talent will only increase further.
That is certainly going to be the case 2017 Cass Tech (Detroit, Mich) four-star wide receiver Donovan Peoples-Jones. He is currently ranked the third wide receiver in the entire country, number one player in the state of Michigan and number one player in the Midwest region on the Scout rankings.
Peoples-Jones was also able to show off his skills as one of the "Fab 50" junior invites for the Under Armour game. And, not to mention, it's also a good escape from the chilly weather back home.
"It was a nice event," Peoples-Jones said. "It's nice to be out here in sunny weather when it's 20 degrees back home. Come out and compete here with some of the best, it's real nice."
On the same field the day before, Michigan throttled Florida in the Citrus Bowl. The number one player in the state of Michigan was also paying attention.
"I watched the game," Peoples-Jones said. "After we worked out I had a chance to watch the game and I was just impressed. Michigan did a great job executing on offense and defense, Harbaugh's putting together something special."
Despite the coaching change from Brady Hoke to Jim Harbaugh, nothing has really changed with the vibe between Peoples Jones and the U-M program. He just needed to see what Harbaugh could do in his first year.
"They've always been pursuing me," Peoples-Jones said. "Nothing's changed like that, I was just ready to see what Harbaugh was going to do and he's doing some very special things."
Fortunately for in-state players, they can visit local programs as often as they'd like. Peoples-Jones was able to check out the medical program on one of his recent visits but is now looking for something else on his next visit, whenever that may come.
The bond between the players on the team.
"Because Michigan is so close it's very convenient to get there," Peoples-Jones said. "I visited the medical school and the academic aspects outside of football but this time I want to get up there and spend time with the players, see how they like it. I've got a couple of teammates up at Michigan so just use that as a time to bond with them and see the vibe."
Peoples-Jones also kept track of the development of receivers Jehu Chesson and Amara Darboh throughout the 2015 season. Considering Harbaugh's experience in the NFL, he was not surprised by their development this season.
"Harbaugh's one of the best," Peoples-Jones said. "He coached players in the league, he knows what coaches in the league want. He knows how to coach a player and that showed."
While Peoples-Jones is planning on releasing a top ten this week, he did mention LSU and Texas A&M as destinations he would like to see going forward. He also outlined his expectations and guidelines for a school to be in consideration for him.
"First is academics and second is athletic history and tradition," Peoples-Jones said. "I've got to have a great relationship with the coaches, I've got to feel myself comfortable with the university on and off campus. Pretty much I've got to be comfortable with everything because this is where I'm going to be the next four years of my life."null