The Georgia Bulldogs Have a Shot at Landing Former USC LB Jarvis Jones (UPDATED)
Updated 6/16/10 @ 9:31 A.M.: Jarvis Jones has chosen the Georgia Bulldogs to continue his playing career. He has been examined and cleared by the Georgia doctors and will resume play starting with the 2011 season, according to Chris Low of ESPN. Jones cited his comfort level with Athens, the coaches, and the team as reasons for his decision. According to Chad Simmons of Scout.com, Jones decided against a visit to Florida State after spending a couple of days in Athens. He had also been in touch with both Alabama and North Carolina.
Original article follows below:
Jarvis Jones, the former USC Trojan, has reportedly narrowed his choice of where to finish his career down to two schools —Florida State and Georgia.
Reports out of Tallahassee, if you believe what you read on message boards, is that he will be playing for the Seminoles in 2010—possibly at defensive end.
However, my experience in reading message board fodder is that you have to take it for what it's worth as it typically falls under one of three categories: truth (20 percent), innuendo (20 percent), or hogwash (60 percent).
Even so, there is one bit of information that is making the rounds on more than one board in light of the recent USC sanctions. Some Trojans fans are saying that the hesitancy in the medical staff's decision to clear Jones had more to do with their coming scholarship hit than his inability to play.
Jones was given clearance by the doctor(s) he saw outside of the program, but the doctors at USC refused to do so—as Lane Kiffin would later put it—there was "a serious concern that hits or a number of hits could lead to permanent damage. ”
Now, the thought that a player's injury could be detrimental to his quality of life would be a scary realization for any coach. Who would want that on his conscience?
On the other hand, if it were that serious, wouldn't doctors outside the program be able to make the same assessment? Yet, Jones has been cleared time and again by those away from USC.
That said, a person could see where the explanation of scholarships and taking chances on a, potentially, injury-prone player has some legs.
Was USC simply scared to risk it due to the sanctions? Or was there some truth to the medical staff's initial assessment?
The questions have no answers until Jones gets on the field, but here is what we do know: 1) Jones will play in 2010 if the NCAA lets him, 2) he will be evaluated medically by Georgia prior to any decision to accept him into their program—should he decide to accept, and 3) every doctor he has seen since leaving USC, has cleared him to play again—successfully.
So, draw your own conclusions; if you dare.
As for the here and now, Jones is expected to make a decision in the coming weeks but there is no indication that he has given either Florida State or Georgia anything more than a 50/50 chance to win his services.
Georgia would love to sign Jones for obvious reasons, he's a beast on the field and could do wonders in the new 3-4.
However, has the Carver High School connection, once severed by the decision of the Georgia coaching staff to rescind a scholarship offer, been repaired enough to get the approval of Dell McGee, Carver's football coach? After all, he did ban Georgia coaches from recruiting his players at one time.
Why does this matter, you may ask? Well, Jones has been in very close contact with McGee during this process and much of what is learned of Jones' status has come from McGee's mouth—not Jones. So that says a lot about who Jones trusts and who has his ear in this matter.
The fact that Georgia has made the cut is a good sign that the Bulldogs have made a good impression but, again, nothing is promised.
During his initial recruitment, back in 2008, Jones made it clear that the coaching staff at his school of choice was a primary factor in making a decision. The new defensive staff at Georgia, with it's NFL compliment, has to look intriguing to Jones as a player and, possibly, future pro prospect—giving Georgia an excellent opportunity to land him.
In the meantime, it's a waiting game, so stay tuned.
(This article was originally found on The Lady Sportswriter —check it out )
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