Avery Jones (© Michael Clark/Scout)

UNC OL Commit Avery Jones's Ceiling is Set 'So Incredibly High'

Inside Carolina went on location with Havelock (N.C.) High head coach Caleb King to learn more about UNC's newest verbal commitment, Avery Jones...

What type of player is UNC gaining in Avery Jones?

"He's just an incredible leader. Anytime your hardest worker is one of your best players, you start to have extreme success. That's what Avery has had throughout his whole career -- is just an unbelievable amount of success. When you look from his freshman year until now, all the games he's won, he's just an incredible worker. His size and ability set the floor, but his work ethic and character is what sets his ceiling so incredibly high."

Jones played right tackle as a sophomore, left tackle last year, and I'm assuming he'll play left tackle this coming year. Where do you see him playing on the college level?

"Avery Jones could play all five [offensive] lineman positions -- he's that intelligent, he's that savvy. He's just an incredible, incredible person to work with and a great teammate, is one thing I'll say about him, as well."

There's been some talk by UNC's coaches of playing Jones at center. Does he have any game experience at center?

"He's always had the ability to. I've practiced him at practice [at center], but never in the game. But, he could easily do that. He's a great athlete -- he plays basketball, he runs track, he could probably play baseball right now if he wanted to, I know he's a better golfer than me."

The recruiting history between UNC and Havelock has had some blemishes. Jones's recruitment could have easily continued that trend because of all the turnover on UNC's staff (the freshly retired Gene Chizik had this territory and Mike Ekeler recently took it over). How did UNC avoid that fate?

"Coach [Larry] Fedora and Coach Kap [Chris Kapilovic] set a tone. Coach Chizik did a great job. As soon as he got in the door, Coach Chizik did a great job in the east [of NC] and we certainly hated to see him go. But Coach Kap and Jason Tudryn, the [Director of High School] Relations guy, did a great job making sure there wasn't a gap. Coach Kap was in constant communication and so was Coach Fedora and Coach Tudryn. All those guys are doing a great job all the way around.

"They have a very good chance of having a very, very special group this year. I think North Carolina is well on its way in this class. This 2018 class, if they can keep all these kids in state you're looking at a class similar to what the Miami Hurricanes were doing in the 80s and they'll win a ring."

It felt like Jones could have committed at any point within the past year. Did you see it coming on Tuesday?

"It's just one of those things where it came out of the blue, no pun intended. But it was what he wanted to do and I told him that I'd back him 100-percent with his decision."

What advice did you give Jones throughout his recruitment?

"The biggest advice I can give any high school player is to go where you're going to be happy when the lights aren't on. You have to go where you're going to be happy when you're not playing football. Great atmospheres, there's incredible ones everywhere. But, you have to be okay in February and March when you're going to class and living there. 

"That's the best thing I can say about Carolina -- that's where Avery felt comfortable all the time."


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