A whirlwind of defensive offers went out after Texas Tech's Euless Trinity satellite camp, as coach Gibbs got to evaluate in person some of the best the Dallas-Fort Worth area has to offer. Two of those offers actually went to Trinity prospects, in 2018 safety Cameron Jones 2017 corner John Davis.
Jones was taken by surprise when he was told about the offer by his head coach.
"I wasn't really expecting it. I felt like I did really good at the camp, but it was still a big surprise. The coaches called my head coach and he called me and told me about it. I wasn't expecting it."
The soon-to-be junior was very impressed by the Texas Tech coaches after watching them in action.
"I liked the coaching staff, I liked the competitive spirit that they had. One-on-ones, they like seeing people get after it and all that. I've been in Texas for a minute now, so Texas Tech is probably one of my favorite Texas schools. I just had fun being there because it was Texas Tech."
Jones, who has known Davis for a long time and is very close with the incoming senior, was pleasantly surprised when he let Davis know about his offer and found out Tech had extended an offer to him as well.
"We always tell each other about offers before we post about them. He was like, 'What? I'm about to get offered too!' Coach had just told him that they called him. So we talked about it and everything. It's crazy because, I'm actually a Georgia kid, I moved from Georgia and when I first moved down to Texas, John Davis was one of my first friends, through something else. It wasn't from growing up in the same school district yet. We happened to connect back and we've known each other for a long time. We always talk about playing with each other at the next level, and for a big Power Five school like Texas Tech to offer us both on the same day, it's a great day."
The younger prospect discussed how he and Davis first met, and the unique series of events which led them to play together on a dominant Trojan defense.
"I met him when we were about seven, he played for the Prime Time team and I played for a different team. Our moms just happened to work with each other too. We ended up playing against each other and everything, but the parents stayed in touch. I moved in to Trinity about a year before him, because I'm in a younger grade. I moved in my eighth grade year. When I was in ninth grade and he was in tenth, he came and it was crazy, I met back up with JD. Today when we got offered, it was just an honor, it's just crazy. I still don't believe it."
Jones talked about potentially playing together with Davis at the next level.
"That's one of our goals. Mainly the colleges that were recruiting him and recruiting me were from two different places. His were more of the Pac-12, and mine were starting to become more of the SEC. For this one to come in, this is one of the big ones. If we don't ever get another one, this is going to be our top one. I don't think there's any other school in the country that will offer us both that's bigger than Texas Tech."
David Gibbs green-lighted the offers after closely watching both prospects during individual drills and one-on-ones. The new offeree was impressed by the defensive coordinator, who as the safeties coach would be his position coach at the next level.
"He actually reminds me of my high school coach right now, coach Everett. He's a nice guy, you know, humorous, and when it's time to get down to business he gets down to business. He doesn't play around. I just feel like, at the next level, that's what you need. Somebody you can joke around with, but when it's time to get serious, you get serious."
Coach Karl Scott also made a positive impression on Jones.
"He was talking to me during the camp. That's another guy that I like. That was the first coach that I got to talk to. He was joking, he said he heard that I had speed and everything, and I had to show him or was it just talk. So I was out there joking with him, trash talking a little bit. Just enjoying myself. But when it's time to get serious, it's time to get serious. He laid down rules and things he liked."
The versatile defender took some reps at corner during the camp, and discussed his desire to improve at that position as well - even though he only lost one rep while practicing at that spot.
"I'm not just a safety, I'm a DB. So I got to work with him some too. I have the offer at safety because that's my main position, but corner is something I'd like to get better at too. You have to be versatile. I didn't lose on any reps at safety, I lost one at corner on a nice double-move post route, which is why I said I'd like to get better and have some improvement to do at the corner position."
Jones discussed the importance of the double-move drills Gibbs and Scott ran them through.
"Those drills are very important, because if you don't know how to zone-turn or anything like that, especially when you play against a good wide receiver, you're gonna get beat. Plain and simple. You're gonna get beat. With these wide receivers now being 6-6 and all that stuff, you have to get the ball at the highest point because if not, you're gonna make somebody's poster."
The Big 12 obviously features some explosive passing offenses with weapons that have the potential to put you on that poster, but that doesn't scare Jones any.
"That's one of the things I've looked into. That's one of the things I'm going to look at when it's time for me to commit somewhere, a conference that passes a lot. The Big 12, you know, my dream is to go to the next level after college, you want to get exposure by playing against teams that pass the ball. You don't just want to defend the run all the time like the SEC. Conference play will play a big part in my recruitment, and Texas Tech is in the Big 12 which is another thing I like about them."
Obviously, Euless Trinity is a powerful name-brand school when talking high school football. Jones was asked about his role on the team, and the schemes he got to play in.
"I don't want to toot my own horn or anything, but I've been the captain on the team for two years. As a free safety I make all the calls and everything. Against bigger receivers like Tyrell Shavers, we had him in our district, so against wide receivers like that that's when I go to corner. Basically wherever he's gonna go, I'm gonna go. Of course we play Cover 2 all the time. Sometimes we blitz on nickel, like another linebacker. I also play that against running teams. Our defense changes depending on who we play that week."
The Texas Tech defense will likely feature a heavy dose of Cover 3 this fall, and Jones discussed his experience with that coverage scheme to date.
"We played Cover 3 against one of the Rockwall schools, when it was my freshman year and we played 3 almost the entire game. I had two interceptions against them. I'm kind of rangy, so I can get to the other side of the field. They were trying us a lot. This year we had a lot of turnovers against people. De La Salle, we made them turn the ball over a lot playing Cover Three."
With Texas Tech the only Power Five school to offer both prospects, and the two players wanting to play together at the next level, is there a timeline in place for making a decision?
"Actually, we talked about it about two weeks ago. We want to play somewhere committed. When you're committed, you don't have to worry about impressing somebody to get more offers and everything. You're just committed to that school. You don't have to worry about if they've still got spots available, you've got your spot. My commitment is coming up real soon and going into my junior year I don't mind being committed to a place I feel like home in."
The defender has actually been out to West Texas before and enjoyed his experience.
"I've been to Lubbock twice, we've got some friends of the family out there. I think it's nice there, I really do love it. It's a nice-sized stadium. I was there for a game, it was a long time ago, I think Michael Crabtree was there. It was pretty intense. I liked the fans, the student section, and everything. They were just nice people. And it was pretty loud."
With several schools beginning to show interest in the prospect, how are his summer plans shaking out over the next couple months?
"I'm going to do one more camp, I'm going to go out to College Station next month later in July, I'm going to do the Texas A&M camp and that's it, I'm going to get ready to focus on the season."
However, Davis will not be in attendance with Jones at the camp.
"No, he's done with camps after Tech. He's done."
Cameron Jones holds offers from Louisiana Tech, Middle Tennessee, Texas Tech, and UTSA. He reports interest from Baylor, TCU, Texas, and Texas A&M.