As we learn every year in the lead-up to Signing Day, there are both gifts and curses to being a top high school football recruit. For all the pomp and circumstance that comes with committing to one of college football’s top programs, so too come the stresses; stresses that in the past have impacted the decisions of some of the biggest names in high school football, from Terrelle Pryor to Cyrus Kouandjio and Landon Collins as well.
Sometimes though the curse of college football recruitment goes beyond just stress and unfortunately in rare cases even elevates to the threat of bodily harm, something that five-star Chris Jones claims he has had to deal with over the last couple days. As Jones remains committed to Mississippi State he is also seriously considering Ole Miss, a fact which has allegedly led some fans to some pretty extreme, and downright scary behavior.
Here is what Jones told ESPN Insider’s Kipp Adams about the hectic last couple days (subscription required to read):
"It was a crazy weekend," Jones said. "I received death threats, insane messages, you name it. I mean, it has not been as stressful as people would think it has been. I have tried to handle it in the most comfortable way possible, so it has really been all right for me, and in the end, I am very blessed to have this opportunity to play for either in-state school."
Not exactly the land of rainbows and butterflies that most people make recruiting out to be, huh?
Either way, Jones’ recruitment will be one of the more interesting ones in the lead-up to Signing Day, as the 6’5, 250 lb. defensive end has become a lightning rod within the state’s borders. Jones has been committed to State since back in June of last year, and given where he was raised (Houston is considered to be a “Mississippi State” town), seemed intent on spending his college years as a Bulldog. However, over the last few weeks, Jones has seemed genuinely conflicted, culminating with a surprise official visit to Ole Miss last weekend. The story only gets crazier when -- according to this fascinating report by the Jackson Clarion Ledger -- Jones actually spent part of this past weekend at both schools.
It’s safe to say that Jones will be one of the more interesting names to keep an eye on as we get closer to Signing Day. At this point, it seems like even himself isn’t totally sure where he’ll end up.
Wherever it is, it’s sure to upset plenty of fans.
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