Florida offers Mississippi JUCO defensive tackle

Will Muschamp and the Florida Gators coaching staff have made it an annual event to offer a top JUCO player, and last week the Gators sent out an offer to one on the defensive line.

Defensive tackle D.J. Jones (6-2, 310, Scooba, MS East Mississippi C.C.) spoke to Florida last week and that’s when he received the good news.

“Florida offered me last week,” said Jones. “Coach [Coleman] Hutzler was the coach that offered me from Florida. He was just telling me that they have interest in me and that they wanted to offer me a scholarship.”

After Jones spoke with Hutzler last week he received a message from defensive line coach Brad Lawing and he gave him a call back to hear what he had to say.

“He [Lawing] said that they are real interested in me and that they like the way I play with my hands,” Jones said. “He said that he believes that I can come in and play early at Florida because they are losing some guys on the defensive line next year.”

The JUCO defensive lineman has yet to visit Florida but he says that his interest in UF is high due to Lawing’s background.

“I have a lot of interest in Florida,” Jones said. “They are in the SEC and they produce a lot of defensive linemen to the NFL. Coach Lawing has a good track record of putting his guys into the league. His coaching background makes me real interested in Florida.”

With over a dozen Division I scholarship offers already for Jones he says that no school is standing out but he knows what he wants to find from a school.

“I’m wide open in my recruitment right now,” Jones said. “I’m just looking for a place that fits me well both academically and athletically.”

JUCO players are allowed to take official visits during the summertime and Jones may take one to Florida before he makes a summer decision.

“I do plan to visit Florida at some point,” Jones said. “I don’t have any visit plans right now honestly. I want to make a decision sometime before the season starts to I want to sit down and make plans to visit schools soon.”

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Andrew Spivey
Andrew always knew he wanted to be involved with sports in some capacity. He began by coaching high school football for six years before deciding to pursue a career in journalism. While coaching, he was a part of two state semifinal teams in the state of Alabama. Given his past coaching experience, he figured covering recruiting would be a perfect fit. He began his career as an intern for Rivals.com, covering University of Florida football recruiting. After interning with Rivals for six months, he joined the Gator Country family as a recruiting analyst. Andrew enjoys spending his free time on the golf course and watching his beloved Atlanta Braves. Follow him on Twitter at @AndrewSpiveyGC.