Depending on whom you speak with, Kendell Jones is arguably the No 1 ranked defensive tackle in Texas. Currently ranked as the No 2 inside defensive linemen in Texas, No 2 in the Midland region and No 5 in the class of 2016. As you can imagine, he holds offers from some of the top college programs in the country. Alabama, LSU, Michigan, Oklahoma, and Texas are but a few teams waiting in line to land the big five-star standout.
Many high school football players kept a close watch on the 2015 NFL draft, a draft where Charlie Strong and his Louisville staff had a huge impact. Coach Strong landed ten players at Louisville from the 2011 class drafted in the NFL draft. Ten players out of a possible 22, which checks in at an astounding 45% in his first full class at Louisville. Time will tell if he and his staff have the same results from his first full class at Texas, but this is something Kendell Jones takes great comfort in.
”It shows me that Charlie can develop talent to get them into the NFL,” Jones said. “It’s not always guaranteed to get players to the NFL, but it gives you great confidence about that possibility.”
Linebacker coach Brian Luc Jean-Mary is his primary recruiter, but he has great relations with the head Longhorn.
”I have a great relationship with Charlie Strong, and I am developing one with Brick Haley,” Jones said. “Coach Strong is cool and funny and Brick came from LSU and we are developing one, so it’s pretty good. Coach BJ is my main recruiter from Texas and he came to my game on Friday, so I was happy to see him. He keeps it real with talks about what I need to do with my grades and stuff.”
The recruiting game is very hard to follow with the amount of media attention these top players receive. At times, it is very difficult to read a recruit, in particular, a top tier player. One thing you can do is follow the actions of a player. Often it will give you all the information you need and, in this case, can only be viewed as a positive for Texas.
”Texas offered me early,” Jones said. “I have been on visits to Texas about 13 times. It’s a really good school. It’s a really big school and of course the players are all great and seeing Malcom Brown getting drafted was cool.”
Fans from Texas, Baylor, Texas Tech, TCU and Arkansas should all expect to see Kendell Jones make visits during the summer months.
Michael Giglio, Director of Player Personnel at the time when Louisville had so much success followed Strong to Texas for the same position. I think you saw first hand what a top-flight recruiting person could do year one with the Longhorns. He relates well with kids and the families and it really puts Texas in an even better position when these kids visit campus. I think you will see the same type of outcome for the class of 2016.