Coach Joey Jones Show Recap 2008-10-29

October 29, 2008 · Filed Under Football, Joey Jones Radio Show · Comment 

The big news at the top of the show was the press release about the Jags playing in Knoxville in 2013. Coach Jones explained why we will play Tennessee instead of an Ohio State or another team that pays more money for a school like us to come in and play. They wanted a big game in the region that payed a fair amount of money but allowed our fans to travel better than to an Ohio State or Nebraska.

The question was asked if Coach Jones had spoken with Alabama or Auburn to schedule a game. Coach Jones said he had been in touch with people at Auburn but neither Alabama or Auburn play in-state teams. He referred back to USAs upset victory over Alabama in the late 80’s. It was a devestating loss for Wimp Sanderson, which he considers his worse loss still after all of these years.

Joining Coach Jones on the show was Brian Turner, recruiting coordinator/defensive staff for the Jags football team. Coach Jones tauted Coach Turners recruiting ability at Troy and how it will help the team to have such a good recruiter on the staff. Troy has been recruiting great players and had one player chosen in the first round of the NFL draft last year. With the prime recruits in the local area watch closely to see what kind of recruits come to play for USA.

A caller asked about scholarships, how many does USA have to give out in its first year. Jones replied that by rule they only have 30 scholarships in the first year, with 16 already given out. So they have 14 they could use between now and the end of december that they can count toward this years number. They are looking for older, more experienced players like JuCo transfers to possibly come play for the Jags.

Another question was asked about game days. Will USA play many Thursday night games, Friday games or Saturday games. Coach Jones, while in Birmingham, saw that Thursday night games worked well because of the lack of conflict with other college games. So USA will definitely have some Thursday night games. But they will also test the waters with various days and times in the first couple years before getting into the FBS (Division I) full time in 2013. They want to have the best experience for USA fans that they can give and in the true southern tradition, great tailgating.

It was noted that something unique for USA right now in Division II is that Coach Jones can contact recruits many times when Division I coaches cannot. So this should benefit Jaguar recruiting for the next few years before going into Division I. If USA hears that SEC teams are recruiting a player then they will be targeted by USA as well.

Another recruiting question was asked about facilities and its role in recruiting. With teams pushing to build better practice facilities and bigger stadiums, what are the USA staff saying to recruits along those lines? Coach Jones pointed out that there has been a shift in what recruits are looking for in the last several years. It used to be the case that the Coaches was the number one reason a kid chose a school. But now the focus has turned more towards the facilities and training areas.

USA staff have been talking about the new fieldhouse plans, coaches offices and player lounge. But one big recruiting tool is student housing in The Grove. Coach Turner said that The Grove beats what Troy had easily. While players who are offered scholarships to Auburn or Alabama will most likely go there, we are targeting players that are just below them. The players that could play at Alabama or Auburn but didn’t receive a scholarship there. Again, The Grove and our forthcoming facilities are playing a part in helping to land those players. It will help tremendously to sell out Ladd-Peebles stadium every game in recruiting and exposure.

Go Jags!