Jones has his own decision to make

Don't think that Brandon Jones is playing second fiddle to anyone. For the 5-foot-9, 175-pound RB/DB/RET, he's not the first player recruiting fans think of when he hear the name 'O'Dea' mentioned, but they should definitely know about him. Jones' teammate - Taylor Mays - is dominating headlines while getting ready to make his college decision. Fans may not know that Jones is getting pretty close too. Are Mays and Jones a package deal?

"Not really," Jones told Tuesday night with a chuckle when he hears the phrase 'package deal'. "For me, I want to get it done before the season starts too. The best offers are now, because those are the schools that really want me. But thinking about Taylor, I'm kind of waiting to see what he does. At the same time I need to worry about myself too. We talk about it all the time and wherever he goes I'm fine with that. If we end up at the same college I'm fine with that. He's got to do his own thing and I have to do my own thing. We go back and forth and joke about it."

There's a reason Idaho, Boise State, Oregon, California and Washington have already offered Jones a full ride. They like his mix of speed, quickness and vision. His versatility as a return man also makes him a coveted athlete. Jones said he would like to play on both sides of the ball in college, but admits that getting a big interception gets him going a lot more than scoring a touchdown.

"With defense, it just gets me more pumped up," said Jones. "We win ballgames. People say it's overlooked. Defense wins games and championships. And the best part about defense is coming up with big plays, shutting them out. It gets me more fired up than playing offense."

California, Oregon and Washington are Jones' favorites right now. "Out of my five offers, I've pretty much narrowed it down to those three," he said. Here's what he had to say about each of his favorites (in the order they offered):
Cal - "I like how they are the second school in the nation academically, so if I come out of there with a degree than I am set for life. They have a really good football program down there, they are really turning it around. And my friend Tony (Anthony Felder) has been telling me that it's really nice. It's away from home and they are rebuilding their stadium. I like the coaches a lot too."

Oregon - "They have really nice facilities down there and a really nice program too. It's away from home. It's not too far away from home, so I could come back if I wanted to. And I like the coaches a lot too."

Washington - "I really like their DB coach, Coach Wilks. And I like Tyrone too, Coach Willingham. They have a really nice campus and it's home, which is fine. I have no problem with that. I can stay home with my family and they can see my games because it's close to home."

Brandon made a point of talking about getting away from home, but is ambivalent when talking about its real importance. "In a way yes," he said about wanting to leave Seattle. "I would like to get away from home, but I have no problem staying at home either. I have no problem with it. It's not going to make a major impact on my decision either way." All the schools involved are recruiting Brandon for defense.

What has Jones done as far as visiting his favorites over the summer? "I went to U-Dub because it's right here," he said. "I've seen a lot. And I also have been to some camps in Eugene so I've been around Oregon and seen them. I might go down to Cal within a week or so. But I don't know if I'm going to go down there yet. I have to find out."

Jones talked a little more about his unofficial visit to Washington this past weekend. "We got a campus tour and it was a nice experience," he said. "I liked it a lot. We saw the facilities and the field and then went to the top and saw the very top of Husky Stadium. We saw the Blue Angels. We got to eat lunch and talk to the other Huskies that were already there. And then we talked to the coaches one-on-one, which was really nice."

And now it comes down to it - a final decision. "It's been going pretty well," Jones said when asked about the recruiting process. "It's a cool process, but at the same time you want to get through it. The closer you get things keep sticking in your head and that's all you are thinking about - what should I do? What's better for me? And everyone else around you, like parents, are interested too."

And then there's Mays' decision and the fanfare that comes along with it. "He'll probably make his (decision) first and then I'll make mine," Brandon said. "I haven't talked to my Dad as much as he's talked to his, so we need to get all these things straightened out before I can do it."

Jones said his family is behind him regardless of his ultimate choice. "They are saying that whatever I feel is the best for me and where I want to go, they will back me up 100 percent," he said. "But they'll tell me what they like and don't like if they have likes and dislikes."

Does one school have an edge over the others at this time? "I really don't know," Jones said when asked if he could make a choice today. "They are all level right now. I think I'm going to sit down with my Dad the next 2-3 days and really think about it."

Jones also said that the current odds of him and Mays going to the same school as '50/50'.

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