“He had already been thinking about it for quite a while,” said Jones’ mother. "He decided two or three weeks ago after he got back from his visit to Michigan and Notre Dame. I just wanted him to wait to be sure. He had been talking about (committing) on his birthday, and yesterday was his birthday.”
For many parents, distance from home becomes a limiting factor when it comes to where their children attend school. Mrs. Jones made sure that wasn’t the case for her son.
“My oldest son went to Florida State… I wanted him to stay close to home,” she admitted. “He ended up (transferring) to Eastern Kentucky. Then my daughter went all of the way up north to Wisconsin to Marquette to play volleyball. I just told them to go where they want… just don’t go to California (laughing). Everything is plane ride away.
With mother’s blessing finally in hand, Jones’ big day soon became Michigan’s.
“I called up Coach Rod Smith and I told him (that he wanted to commit to Michigan),” Jones recalled. “Then he put the defensive coordinator (Scott Shafer) on the phone. He was saying that they were going to have me playing strong safety and that I would be doing a lot of blitzing and stuff, so that’s good. They were telling me how bad that they wanted me. I was one of the top dudes on their list, so they were real happy about it. (Coach Rodriguez) was doing a meeting or something, so I didn’t get a chance to talk to him.”
Moments ago Jones phoned GoBlueWolverine to report that Michigan’s headman had just given things the green light.
“He said he was happy to have me join the family,” said Jones. “He said that they’ve really been trying to recruit Florida hard and that I will have a chance to play early. I plan on graduating in December so I can (enroll at Michigan) early and go through spring ball.”
Ultimately, Jones’ decision boiled down to comfort and familiarity.
“When I went up (to Michigan) for my little trip, it was real nice,” he said. “It felt like I was at home. They were really on me the whole time. Then I’ve got Greg (Mathews), and he’s from ‘the Water’ (i.e. their high school Orlando Edgewater)...so I already know him. (His presence at Michigan) was a real big (factor). He came from ‘the Water’ and he is one of the top dudes now. I’m going to try to work hard and try to do the same. We’ve been chilling and vibing and stuff. A lot of these Florida schools are stacked with players, so when you go up north, those coaches really love kids from down south. I really felt like that was a great choice for me.”
In addition to Mathews’ presence, Mrs. Jones is also comforted by the fact that there are even more external sources of support for her son in the Great Lake State.
“My oldest son’s friend plays for the Detroit Lions now,” she said. “His name is Andre Fluellen. So he’ll be like another big brother up there.”
“Dre played ball with my brother at Florida State, so I already know him,” Jones added. “That’s all good. I know I have some family (in Detroit) too.”