Junior report: Texas High WR Nathan Jones

Continuing our recent focus on junior wideouts, defensive backs and athletes, we caught up with Texas High Coach <B>Barry Norton</B> to get the details on Texarkana's highly regarded wideout <B>Nathan Jones</B>.

Nathan Jones, a prolific wide receiver who last measured 6-1, 180 pounds with a 4.51 forty (average based on three different times), may be the most polished pass-catcher in his class of peers.

"Football comes real easy to him," Jones' head coach told IT. "He's real smooth, runs great routes, has terrific hands and a good understanding of the game on both sides of the ball."

The bluechip receiver started his varsity career as a sophomore catching 51 passes for 756 yards (almost 15 ypc) and 8 TDs while also recording 59 tackles, 19 solo, and an eye-popping 8 INTs while playing free safety on the defense.

Accolades: 1st-team all-state, all-area and all-district as a free safety while earning all-district and all-area honors at the receiver position.

Extremely impressive for a sophomore.

As a junior, he totaled 59 receptions, 978 yards and 8 TDs. Also returned 9 punts for 83 yards (9.2 yards-per-punt return) with his longest going for 44 yards as he was knocked out at the 1-yard line, just stopping him from adding a PR for TD to his stat package. Norton said he didn't have Jones' defensive stats as a junior right in front of him.

Accolades: 1st-team all-state, all-area, all-district as a wideout while also adding all-area and all-district awards at the free safety position.

It gets better...

According to Norton, the kid also averaged 14 points a game as a small forward on the basketball team, not to mention springboarding into track and field immediately after hoops season was wrapped up.

"He runs the mile-relay, the 4x200 (new event for boys track) and the individual 200 and 400 meters," Norton told IT. "Best time in the 200 was a 22.3 and his best time in the 400 was a 49.6."

Of course, stepping up from high school 4A to elite-level NCAA D-I football requires just a little bit more physicality, so IT grabbed some weight room numbers to digest.

Bench: 260, Incline Bench: 210, Squat: 285, Power clean: 225.

Schools showing interest: "Texas, A&M, OU, Texas Tech and Arkansas have all been by the school and he's been getting some mail from LSU."

Grades: "He's very good academically and is a full qualifier," Norton said.

[Editor's note: See the last two editions of the Inside Scoop for a lot more on Jones.]

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