Dan Mullen was the first collegiate coach to offer a scholarship to quarterback Emory Jones.
Two years and seven months after that Mississippi State offer kick-started his recruitment, the 6-foot-3, 196-pound Jones put an end to the process Wednesday by signing with Mullen.
The top-50 overall prospect flipped his commitment from Ohio State to Florida after officially visited UF last weekend. He was also considering Alabama and Florida State.
— Chris Kirschner (@ChrisKirschner) December 20, 2017
The new Florida coach went all in for Jones after losing a commitment from 4-star quarterback Matt Corral, who flipped to Ole Miss last Thursday. Mullen and UF quarterbacks coach Brian Johnson benefited from their history with Jones.
“They started recruiting him to Mississippi State in the ninth grade,” Emory’s mother, Trina Jones, told SEC Country. “I have heard a lot of great things about both of them. I’m sure Coach Mullen can come in and pick up where he was before at Florida … kind of stabilizing the program again.”
Jones had been committed to Ohio State for the past 18 months and was the top QB target for Alabama. But his final decision came down to Florida and Florida State, and his comfort level with Mullen proved to be the difference.
The Under Armour All-American is a perfect fit for Mullen’s spread offense with his ability as a passer and runner. His chances of playing early at Florida are also much better compared to Alabama, FSU and Ohio State.
When Mullen was recruiting him to MSU, Dak Prescott was the Bulldogs starting quarterback and his play got the attention of Jones.
“I like what Mississippi State does with their quarterbacks,” Jones told Scout.com in 2016. “Watching Dak play, I feel like I could fit in there.”
Jones is the nation’s No. 4 dual-threat quarterback and No. 40 overall prospect, according to the 247Sports Composite rankings. He will enroll early at UF and be expected to compete for the starting job this spring.