Jones "wows" the service academies

After receiving offers from Air Force and Army, James Jones IV decided to take the initiative and gauge Navy's interest as well. He got back a resounding "yes" from the Midshipmen coaches which led to an offer last Sunday, November 23rd from Shaun Nua. caught up with the 6-foot-1, 175-pound defensive back out of Mullen High School in Denver, Colo.

"Last Sunday, I received my tenth overall offer from Navy," Jones said. "The other two service academies offered me and I reached out to Navy. An offer was probably going to happen regardless because a day later they got back to me and said that they knew who I was and had seen my film. I was already someone who was on their radar. Coach Nua said they like that I'm a very polished player. From the film he said they love the footwork, cover skills and physicality in my game. He mentioned I'm wiry and athletic enough to bounce between corner or safety.

"The coaches at Air Force and Army told me they liked similar things about my game as what Coach Nua said. Air Force also talked about my leadership. They went around the school asking random people about me. They said that I was the type of person who has a positive effect of the people I'm around and they like the way I present myself. It was a big deal to them, when offering, to see the type of person I was.

"I'm looking at the service academies because of what they represent post-football. The NFL may not be in my future so I'm going to need another endeavor to pursue. I'm looking to major in either business or engineering and the service academies have good programs in both. I'm looking at Navy and Air Force a little more than I am Army just because of location and the branch of the service I'd like to go into. I'm not huge on the military aspect as a part of my decision, but more about my role and what I would do within the branch.

"Two weeks ago I was at Air Force on an unofficial visit when they played Nevada. I enjoyed it. It's a nice place, the people made me feel welcome, and think the team is really playing well this year. It's a place where I feel like I can go in and have success and that's really important. I'm not ready to rule any school out because some of the bigger schools out of the Pac-12 have been showing stronger interest, but I'll be deciding on official visits here in the next few weeks."

Jones initial offer came from Hawaii in April 2013 and was followed by Air Force, Grambling State, Montana, Morgan State, Northern Colorado, and Sacramento State. In his senior year he's picked up additional offers from Eastern Washington, Army, and Navy and is hearing from Boise State, Cal, Fresno State, Minnesota, Nevada, Oregon State, and Washington State.

"The consistency I've displayed this season, I feel, has put me on the map with a lot of the new schools," he said. "I feel like I went out this year and solidified what I did as a junior. I've definitely gotten better and more mature as a player, but I'm making more dynamic and spectacular plays. I think I was able to wow teams into offering me.

"Education is definitely what I'm going to be basing my college decision on, but a good football program helps too. I want to go to a place where I know I can be success and be able to sustain that success over the course of four years. I want to feel comfortable there. I may want to live and work there after college, so I don't want to be in an isolated, remote location in the middle of nowhere. I would be willing to play out of my region because my dad is in college coaching. I've been moving around all of my life. I know I can adapt."

James Jones father's, also James Jones, is the San Jose State Spartans defensive line coach. He had previous coaching stints at Northern Colorado, Dartmouth, Kentucky State, Kansas State, Prairie View A&M, Texas Southern, Wagner, Cornell, Morehouse, and Bowling Green.

In his high school career at Mullen, Jones had more than 100 tackles in his junior season in the role of free safety but transitioned in his senior year to more of a lock-down corner. He had two interceptions, 70 tackles, and handled kickoff return duties as a senior on a 4-6 Mustangs team. Top Stories