GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Emory Jones is officially a Gator.
The 4-star quarterback and top-50 overall recruit enrolled early at Florida this weekend, moving into his dorm on Saturday night. Jones is one of eight mid-year enrollees who begin classes Monday.
The first order of business for the 6-foot-3, 202-pound signal caller?
The freshman 15.
“The first thing they said is they want to get me up to 217 [pounds],” Jones told SEC Country during Under Armour All-America week. “They want me to work hard and compete. They told me it’s going to be hard for a freshman to come in and start, so I know I have to get to work, compete with a lot of guys there now. I’m ready for it.”
Jones will battle redshirt sophomores Feleipe Franks and Kyle Trask and redshirt freshman Jake Allen for the starting job. Florida coach Dan Mullen and quarterbacks coach Brian Johnson are expected to hold an open competition in spring practice and fall camp.
“My mindset going in is to compete, first off,” Jones said. “I’m the type of quarterback that can do a lot of things, especially when I have guys around me. It’s a hard thing to stop for a defense.
“I can’t wait to work with Coach Johnson and Coach Mullen. I know they can get me prepared and develop me as a man and a quarterback. So I see myself fitting in pretty good with their offense.”
Jones is ranked the nation’s No. 4 dual-threat quarterback and No. 41 overall prospect, according to the 247Sports composite rankings. Florida’s offense and quarterback position has held back the Gators football program for the past decade, but Jones believes he can end the drought with Mullen and Johnson.
“My whole life I’ve always been on a team that always starts off not too good, and then they end it very well. I feel again it’s another thing that God put this in front of me for a reason,” Jones said. “I feel like I’m the type of dude to come in and change a program around.
“There’s not really any pressure to it. This is what I do. I worked so hard for this and it’s all paying off now. I definitely accept this challenge. I know what I have to do.”