Special thanks to Scout.com publishers and recruiting experts Allen Trieu, Sean Scherer and Mike Fowler.
On Friday, Northwestern got a commitment from one of its top targets of the 2010 class: Wideout Tony Jones, from Grand Blanc Community High School in Grand Blanc, Mich.
Jones, who ultimately chose Northwestern over Michigan State, is a 6-footer with 4.45 speed. Last season as a junior, Jones nabbed 69 catches for 1,065 yards, including nine TDs.
A fine student, he carries a 3.7 core grade point average and a 24 on his ACT. He plans to study pre-law in college.
Below, Part I of the video from Jones' Friday press conference, as well as an exclusive interview Jones had with Purple Reign just minutes after committing to NU.
Part II of Scout's exclusive video from the press conference can be found here.
On how it feels to be done with the recruiting process and have a decision made...
It feels great to finally get that weight lifted off my shoulders. I felt that Northwestern was the place for me, so I didn’t feel it was necessary to drag the recruiting process out any longer. I am very excited to be part of the Northwestern football family. I'm just so excited. Words can’t express how I feel right now.
On what it was about NU that made him feel it was the place to commit...
Well, I just really felt wanted at Northwestern. I like the recruiting style they had. I felt they were very honest with me at all times.
Also, I interacted with so many coaches and players at Northwestern. At most programs you only talk with a position coach or recruiting coordinator, but it wasn’t like that with Northwestern. I was always talking with a bunch of coaches – coach (Kevin) Johns, even coach Fitz, he was always talking with me and sending me mail on on Facebook, and that really helped me make my decision.
On whether NU's spread offense had anything to do with his decision...
Yeah, I like their offense a lot. That’s the same one we run here at my high school. I felt that would be a great fit for me. I’m very familiar with the spread offense and Northwestern is known for passing the ball a lot. I felt with my skills and my experience that that’d be a good fit for me.
On NU's academic reputation and whether or not that played a factor...
The academics were a big deciding factor when it came to it. I feel like at Northwestern, I can’t go wrong leaving there with a degree from one of the best colleges in the nation. I’m really excited about going to school there and being a student athlete at a school like that.
Coach Fitz does a great job making sure his guys do well off the field too. I remember hearing that the team grade point average was 3.0 last season, and that’s important to me. I look forward being with other guys who care about academics like I do.
On how nice it will be to be able to again focus on his high school team...
That was my main motivation in ending the recruiting process. I wanted to be able to focus on my high school season. I felt like I owed it to my teammates to be 100 percent dedicated and I wanted to be able to just focus on them.