Tai-ler Jonesing for the Irish

As many Stanford fans are likely aware by now, four-star wide receiver and former 2010 recruiting class centerpiece Tai-ler Jones decommitted from Stanford and verballed instead to Notre Dame following an official visit to South Bend, Ind. over the weekend.

And while the news likely comes as a shock to the Cardinal faithful, Jones had actually been thinking about making the switch for several weeks.

"I just felt like Notre Dame was the better fit for me," Tai-ler Jones said. "Going down there, I'd be a legacy kid and closer to home. I'd have family on campus, so if I ever got homesick I'd have people I could go to."

The opportunity to graduate high school a semester early also played a large role in Jones' decision.

"I can't graduate early if I go to Stanford, and that's something I had my mind set on for a while," he said.

When Jones committed back in April, he had recently returned home from a lengthy unofficial visit to Palo Alto, where he got a chance to become acquainted with several players and coaches on the current Stanford football team.

"That was the only team whose players I had actually hung out with," Jones said. "When it came time to actually seeing myself playing with these guys, I only had one comparison and it was Stanford."

But during his weekend in South Bend, Jones was finally able to have a comparable experience.

"Going to Notre Dame and hanging out with their players and having the same interaction with their coaches, I had something to compare it to in all aspects, including hanging out with the players and spending time on campus," Jones said.

Jones said he called Stanford head coach Jim Harbaugh and his primary recruiter, Coach Willie Taggart, earlier with the news of his decommitment.

"They were both disappointed and trying to tell me that I was making a decision spur of the moment, that I needed to let the feelings die down and they were trying to get me to take an official still and stay committed," Jones said."

That won't happen, though, Jones says. He said he has shut down his recruitment and no longer plans to submit an application to Stanford or take any more official visits.

That decision isn't just a blow to Stanford's fans and coaches, though. Jones and his father, Andre, had taken on a lead role in recruiting other recruits to Stanford over the course of the past few months.

"It is I guess saddening to de-commit when you had the relationship I had with some of the other recruits but at the same token just because I de-committed doesn't necessarily mean I have to stop talking to them or stop carrying on that relationship," Jones said.

Jones said that he received a text from Terrence Stephens after he decommitted, but no 2010 players yet. He also added that he doesn't think his decision will impact the recruitment of his friend and Stanford commit Daunte Carr.

With Stanford football losing Blake Barker, Tai-ler Jones and in Tuscon, Ariz., the program is probably happy to see this weekend draw to a merciful close. As the staff and players try to bring big uncle Mo back on their side, stay tuned to The Bootleg.


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