2009 Recruiting: Mike Jones Comment Count

Brian February 17th, 2009 at 1:32 PM

Previously: Vlad Emilien.

Orlando, Florida - 6'2" 200
mikejonesplusweirdguy_thumb4 Scout 3*, #49 S
Rivals 3*, #25 S
ESPN 77, #55 S
Others --
Other Suitors Auburn, Kentucky, ND
(no offer), UNC, Wake, USF
YMRMFSPA Larry Foote
Previously On
Mike Jones Commits To Michigan

Early enrollee. Orlando Edgewater (Greg Mathews).
Stogie guy is from the Orlando Touchdown Club.

Ah, Mike Jones, he of the accursed Google-proof name that is not Frobozz Tamoshanter.

Though Jones is listed as a safety by everyone, everyone also expects he'll move down to linebacker immediately. He's already 200+ pounds and 6'2"; in a year or two he'll be 215 or 220 and decidedly ponderous for a safety: it's OLB for him, a la Jonas Mouton. Jones' opinion of himself points the same way:

"I'm a hitter," Jones said. "I hit real hard and I've got good speed. I react to the ball real quick and have great instincts."

He admits he wants to improve on his covering skills. "I'd like to work on my footwork and steps."

Rivals.com analyst Michael Langston:

"Mike's just a great player,” Langston said. “He's listed as a safety, but he pretty much plays a rover linebacker at Edgewater. He's a really hard hitter, but also a really good cover guy. He's not going to cover like a corner, but he can cover for his size. They can use him that way if they need someone to fill that void."

His coach concurs:

He is a defensive back who could easily grow into an outside linebacker. He is every bit of 6’3, 205 lbs. He is a very rangy kid who could end up at 235-240 lbs. He can run well and loves to make contact, and his best attribute is that he loves to hit.

So: not a safety. A linebacker. Probably. Coach again (link ibid):

I believe they are going to stick him at strong safety first and see how he adapts to that position, which I believe will fit their style. We run the same type of defense that Coach Rodriguez ran at West Virginia (3-3-5) so he has been one of those outside linebacker / safeties for four years, and I believe he could play either position at the college level.

This is a theme with Michigan's linebacker recruiting this year: hybrid cover guys you can run out there in the spread. These guys are basically the opposite of Johnny Thompson, and the one guy who isn't a high school safety (Hawthorne) is actually the smallest of the bunch.

As far as how good he is, he received fairly early offers from Auburn and North Carolina along with a number of other teams not as imposing on the recruiting trail, plus heavy interest from Notre Dame that did not actually materialize into an offer. Or may have. There was some confusion about that, and though newspaper comment sections are pretty much the worst places on the internet this actually sounds very plausible as to what went down

The guru ratings above are all pretty meh, but he does have a mitigating circumstance: his junior year was cut short by a shoulder injury. In the five games he played he had 56(!) tackles, eight(!) sacks, and four forced fumbles.

Random biographical note: Jones' father was a first-round NFL draft pick who played for the Steelers, Patriots, and Dolphins over the course of a nine-year career.

Why Larry Foote? ESPN spends most of its evaluation talking about what a terrifying blitzer Jones is; Foote was a terrifying blitzer who was about the same size and weight as Jones' potential down the road. Foote was also a moderately hyped recruit making a shift from safety to linebacker. (IIRC, that was a long time ago.)

Guru Reliability: Moderate. Jones is at a big Florida school and is probably pretty well scouted, but the junior year injury and his decision to avoid camps put some wobble in his ranking.
General Excitement Level: Eh; I'm expecting one of the OLB recruts to pan out in a big way, one to be okay, and one to wash out.
Projection: A redshirt or special teams duty in year one followed by a year behind Mouton; in 2010 will go to war for the starting job.



February 17th, 2009 at 2:11 PM ^

The great thing about the Frobozz Tamoshanter joke is that it becomes no less funny with each subsequent deployment. I laughed really hard again this time.


February 17th, 2009 at 2:29 PM ^

Stogie guy is David Lamm, former host of a show on Fox Sports Radio in Jacksonville, Florida. I have no idea what his connection is to the Orlando Touchdown Club, especially since he used to work in Jacksonville and clearly has never scored a touchdown himself.

P.S. He was awful.

P.S.S. Can someone please clue me in on the Frobozz joke?


February 17th, 2009 at 3:51 PM ^

First, it's P.P.S. Post script script makes little sense, right?

Secondly, when you google a name like Mike Jones, lots of things come up re: guys who aren't the Mike Jones we are interested in. If a recruit's name was Frobozz Tamashantor (or whatever it is) the hits would likely all refer to the Frobozz coming to Michigan. Among other obvious benefits.

chitownblue (not verified)

February 17th, 2009 at 2:49 PM ^

FWIW, Brian, my memory on Foote jives with yours - I remember his first action coming at safety, similar to Ian Gold.


February 17th, 2009 at 2:52 PM ^

Brian - can you make the depth chart link to player pages, and just copy and paste stuff like this into each player's page? Would be quite useful to reference throughout the year. Side note - plz update depth chart.