CLIFTON, Va. — Florida is after another elite cornerback from Washington D.C.
Deon Jones, a four-star recruit, was offered by the Gators a year ago and visited UF last summer.
At Nike’s “The Opening” regional camp Sunday, Jones told SEC Country that Florida is one of his top schools of interest.
“It’s self-explanatory,” Jones said, “DBU.”
The 6-foot-1, 190-pounder said the success of two UF cornerbacks from his area is a big selling point for him.
“When you look at Joe Haden, he went down there and headed to the league (NFL),” Jones said of the 2010 first-round pick. “Another one, Jalen Tabor, he’s going to make it to the league. I model my game after Jalen because he’s hot right now.
“Everyone’s dream is to make it to the NFL. So by Florida being DBU, they’re definitely going to get you right. The atmosphere and everything will get you prepared for the next level.”
Jones, the nation’s No. 9 cornerback and No. 82 overall prospect, said as an eighth grader he used to work out with Tabor and his high school football team. Another positive about the Gators for Jones is secondary coach Torrian Gray.
“Coach Gray is my guy,” said Jones, who visited Virginia Tech twice in 2015. “I actually talked to him a lot when he was at V-Tech. Since he went down to Florida, he’s still my guy.”
Jones plans to announce a top 10 after he checks out some West Coast schools. He’ll then take his official visits and decide in November or December before early enrollment.
Jones said he liked the academics, football facilities and weather at Florida, and he’s looking to make a return trip to Gainesville.
“I loved it when I was down there,” Jones said. “It felt great and I want to get back.”
SEC Country’s Corey Masisak contributed to this report.
Unless otherwise indicated, rankings and ratings come from the 247Sports Composite.