Erial (N.J.) Timber Creek 2017 cornerback Naijee Jones will not be alone for long. The first and only commitment in the Rutgers 2017 recruiting class, Jones has a strong reputation in New Jersey.
A multi-time visitor since the end of his state-champion junior season with the Chargers, Jones wants to be the microphone of Chris Ash’s first full class with the Scarlet Knights.
“I want to play a role,” Jones said. “My word means something with me already being committed to Rutgers, and I’m just trying my best to let everybody know that it’s not fake. It’s real, and I’m ready to have everybody else come aboard.”
Jones committed to Rutgers during the final days of former coach Kyle Flood’s regime. He chose Rutgers for the school first, he said, and the transition into Ash’s leadership excites him about the future.
“I just liked the fact that they have a plan,” Jones said. “Their plan is to move forward with the program and not sit still. They’re changing to turn Rutgers into a winning tradition. Coach Ash has a lot of confidence in everything he showed us. He explained why we can believe in him and trust him.”
Jones visited Rutgers for its Saturday junior day weekend, where he spread the word about the program to anyone within hearing distance.
“I have a good bond with the program,” Jones said. “I talk to someone from there almost every day. They’re also great people outside of football. We talk about family life and education and they’re always ready to give you some words of wisdom.”
Jones spoke highly of a growing relationship with assistant defensive backs coach Aaron Henry, who coaches cornerbacks for the Scarlet Knights.
“We’ve already created a bond,” Jones said. “We talk or text every day we can. He’s my guy already there. He’s very straight up. That’s what I like about him. He speaks real. He doesn’t sugarcoat anything. That’s why I’m excited to play for him.”