Florida hosted one of the top 2016 running backs in the country on Saturday in running back Tony Jones Jr. (6-0, 215, Bradenton, FL IMG Academy) who received the red carpet treatment from the Gators.
“The visit was good and the tour was really nice,” Jones said. “My tour guide was pretty good. Speedy (the tour guide) is a cool guy. At first I thought he was going to be a lazy tour guy but he wasn’t and at the end he was telling me about his family and all of that. I think I did pretty good at camp on Saturday too and I got to take a picture with the orange jersey.”
When Jones was finished with the tour he got the opportunity to talk to two of Florida’s coaches as well as see the Gators locker room which he called his favorite part of the trip.
“I also got to talk to the Coach [Brian] White and Coach [Will] Muschamp about the camp,” Jones said. “My favorite part of the visit was the way they walk out and all of the players touch the Gator head outside of the locker room. That was cool.”
After camp was over and Jones had been dismissed from campus he received news that the Gators had extended a scholarship to him.
“Florida offered this week too,” Jones said. “Florida is number one for me because they are my favorite school since I was little. I grew up a Florida fan and my favorite player is Emmitt Smith because I watched him at the Cowboys.”
Jones says that after he received the offer from Brian White and the running backs coach had a message for him.
“Coach White said I’m number one on their recruiting list and they want me to be a Gator,” Jones said. “They want me to play in the Swamp and come back to visit Florida more often.”
Florida should have no problem getting Jones back on campus as he plans to return to Gainesville to fish with White but he hopes his luck changes and he can catch a fish.
“Coach White is a cool guy and he’s a very good coach,” Jones said. “He likes to yell a lot and he always tells me that he wants me to come back and go fishing with him. I never catch any fish though because they never come to my line they always go to my granddad’s line.”
As a sophomore Jones rushed for 1,145 yards and scored 12 touchdowns and was named to the Tampa Times All-Pinellas County Team before transferring to IMG Academy.
Insider’s take: Jones is a big kid already and he’s just going into his junior season. The Gators are in great shape as Jones was very excited to learn of the Florida offer a team that he grew up cheering for.