Ole Miss, Mississippi State in Recruiting War for Chris Jones in Advance of Signing Day
Jones is the No. 46 ranked player according to ESPN, but has been ranked as high as No. 2 according to 247sports.com. Mississippi State was among the first to offer Jones a scholarship and he committed to Dan Mullen and the Bulldogs in the summer, but has received increased attention as a result of his dominating play along the defensive line for the small school in Chickasaw County in northeast Mississippi.
Florida recently tried to schedule Jones for a visit but he declined saying he wasn’t interested in joining the Gators and didn’t want to waste their time, and was supposed to be in Starkville for a visit with the Bulldogs this past weekend, but instead showed up on the campus of in-state rival Ole Miss along with a number of highly ranked recruits.
Rumors of Jones being in Oxford began to leak out on Twitter late Friday night as Ole Miss students took to the social media site to say they saw Jones on campus, and when a picture of Jones in an Ole Miss uniform along with fellow Ole Miss recruits his the web on Saturday, I thought the internet was going to shut down with the barbs and trash talk between the two fan bases.
Rivalries are what make college football the greatest sport in the world and the rivalry between the two schools in the Magnolia state are among the best. You can expect this weekend to see that rivalry ratcheted up a few notches as the competition for Jones reaches its climax.
All along Jones has maintained that even if he goes on other visits it wouldn’t change his commitment to Mississippi State, but teenagers are known to change their minds quite frequently and after this weekend, we should know if State hangs onto their crown jewel of their recruiting class or if Ole Miss adds to their class that could end up being in the top-five.
The 6-6 250-pound defensive end has been a fast riser during his senior season that saw Jones drop 40 pounds and go from a two-star prospect to an elite blue-chip five-star prospect. In his senior season, Jones has a ridiculous 160 tackles, 45 of them going for a loss and 14 sacks.
Follow me on Twitter @PatrickASchmidt