New Jersey native Adonis Jennings ranks among the most explosive wide receiver prospects in the northeast, netting scholarship offers from across the country. The 4-star senior standout suits up for state title contender Timber Creek (Sicklerville, N.J.) and created a verbal pact with Rutgers in June, selecting the Scarlet Knights from an offer list that includes Clemson, Kansas, Pittsburgh, Iowa and Arizona.
Jennings, a 6'3", 190-pound playmaker, is off to a scintillating start this season. Through three games, he has hauled in 25 passes for 452 receiving yards and six touchdowns, per MaxPreps.
He threatened state receiving records in his second contest of the year, catching 13 passes for 288 yards and three scores in a 50-41 loss to Eastern. He also returned a kickoff for a touchdown in that contest.
Jennings joined Bleacher Report for a conversation about his commitment to Rutgers, the dominance he's displaying this fall, and what the Scarlet Knights' move to the Big Ten Conference means for the future.
Bleacher Report: It seems like things are really clicking for you in the Timber Creek offense so far this season. Is it fair to say your game against Eastern (13 catches, 288 receiving yards and four total touchdowns) was the best performance of your football career?
Adonis Jennings: Yes it was. I've never done that before. 13 catches. 288 yards. That's the best I've ever done. I'm going to try to keep it up.
BR: Plenty of college programs recruited you as a top priority. Aside from Rutgers, which schools were in the mix when it came time to make your decision?
AJ: I was heavily considering Pittsburgh and Temple.
BR: What ultimately determined your choice?
AJ: Rutgers really stood out to me. It's my home state and they're going into the Big Ten. I think I was one of their top receivers on the board and they really liked me a lot. I really like them and that's why I committed to them. I plan on putting in the work next year.
BR: Let's focus on the Big Ten move. It's been a dream for that program for a while and Rutgers makes the leap next year. What stands out to you about the situation?
AJ: It feels good knowing that I'm going to be playing in the best conference overall in the country. I'm looking forward to playing in the Big Ten, the atmosphere is crazy! And Big Ten football is going to be right in Piscataway (home of the Scarlet Knights) so hopefully our fan base can turn into a Big Ten fan base.
BR: There are two of your former Timber Creek teammates currently playing at Rutgers (freshman linebacker Myles Nash and sophomore linebacker Quanzell Lambert). How much of a factor was that in your recruitment?
AJ: It kind of played a big role. With Quanzell and Myles already up there I just thought why not go up there when I have people that I've played with and people that will look out for me. So yeah, it played a big role.
BR: You're not the only highly regarded receiver recruit heading to Rutgers next year. Fellow 4-star wide receiver Saeed Blacknall is also committed. Are you excited to compete for playing time with him, while also challenging defenses together?
AJ: Oh yes. We're both in the ESPN 150 and that's really rare to get two receivers that are top-notch. I'm excited to play with him. I can't wait to play with him in the Big Ten.
BR: Clearly your stats tell the story of how well you've played this season. What kind of work did you put in before the season to set yourself up for this level of success?
AJ: Last year, I didn't really have any yards-after-catch, so that's what I focused on for this year. Making big plays, breaking tackles, and expanding plays. I worked on that in the offseason and it's paying off.
BR: What are your thoughts on what you've seen from Rutgers so far this season?
AJ: (The Arkansas game) was a good win. They were down, but they showed that they fight and don't give up. They came back and got the W. They've had a good season so far. They lost to Fresno State in overtime but every game isn't perfect. They're doing a good job right now so hopefully they keep it up.
BR: Do you have any planned trips to see the Scarlet Knights in action and meet with the team again?
AJ: I know I'm going to the Rutgers versus Temple game (Nov. 2). Their next home game is Oct. 26 against Houston so I'm definitely going to make it to that game. I haven't been able to make it up to a game this year yet. I'm not sure when my official visit will be.