Player Profile: Cam'ron Jones
Jones committed to UCLA over Oklahoma, Texas Tech, Mississippi State and Minnesota. He had previously been verbally committed to Texas Tech, but opened up his recruitment, and ever since there's been some buzz about Jones and the Bruins. UCLA secondary coach Demetrice Martin has a good recruiting presence in the state of Texas, and a recruiting history at Mansfield, and he used that to wedge his way into the pole position for Jones. Texas sources have said that UCLA and the L.A. lifestyle very much appealed to Jones, and the word is that he silently committed to the Bruins a few weeks ago.
Jones is a great safety prospect who has been targeted by plenty of high-major football programs. Jones' frame has filled out as he has matured. We like him as an in-the-box-style safety who will attack the run. Jones has verified 40 speed in the 4.5s and is a track athlete during the spring. He flashes good closing speed on the gridiron and can deliver the big hit, or break on a throw to make a play on the ball. He plays with an attacking and physical style.
He's an instinctive player who is willing and able to crash the box and the flats to make plays against the run and screen games. Jones can improve his balance and body control as he can at times overpursue, but that's also a result of his athleticism and aggression. He's posted verified 4.30 shuttle time, but can still improve his short-area lateral mobility. Overall, Jones is a Power Five conference safety prospect who should garner a lot of offers thanks to his combination of frame potential and athleticism.
Jones played for Euless (Texas) Trinity as a junior in 2016, but has moved and will play his senior season at Mansfield (Texas). Both programs compete on the 6A level in Texas, which is the state's largest and most competitive classifiaction. Both programs are well known in the area for their physical style of play and for producing prospects who produce on the next level. -- Gabe Brooks and Greg Powers
How He'll Fit at UCLA
UCLA has seen the impact that a physical, hard-hitting safety can have on its defense under Jim Mora, and it's been lacking that element somewhat for the last couple of years. Jones is that type of player, and with UCLA going more and more to a nickel, two-linebacker look, getting safeties who can cover but also play in the box and stoutly against the run are highly valuable. UCLA is looking to sign three safeties in this class, and already had a commitment from Jhevon Hill, a long, free-safety type, so Jones, more of a strong safety, complements Hill. Now Martin will look to fill out the 2018 safety class with one more elite safety and can be pretty picky about it; he has plenty of very good prospects he's doing very well with remaining on the board.