by LONN PHILLIPS SULLIVAN
It's not every day you find yourself talking to a future 1st Round pick...but when chatting it up with 2022's 4 star-rated OT Emery Jones, I can say loudly and proudly: I think we talked to a future 1st Rounder today.
Winning a state title for Catholic High last season (while being underrated by some recruiting services), the tape didn't lie and accordingly, Jones saw his stock skyrocket a year ago this week:
On May 14-15th 2020, Emery received 4 major offers in 2 days, the first led by a phone call from LSU's Coach Orgeron, quickly followed 2 minutes later by Alabama and then Florida. Such is the inherent industry-wide trust in LSU's scouting / recruiting department, naturally all the other schools came knocking once the Tigers made their move: they all had to see Emery Jones.
Even before the wave of offers came in last May, Jones remains a player every Power 5 school in the country continues to monitor closely, watching as Emery's development skyrockets & rare speed improves.
I've been watching, too...and when analyzing every top 2022 OL, there's only one other OL who can equal (or even top) #1 ranked / 5 star powerhouse Will Campbell....and that young man is Emery Jones.
It geauxs without saying...but let's do it anyway:
If OL Coach James Cregg could sign both Jones and Campbell as our bookend tackles, the Tigers' O-Line would most likely progress into an impenetrable wall for 3-4 years.
Already a champion heading into his senior year, Emery is capable of playing guard as well as tackle, confidently casting himself as a leader on or off the field, and already sporting a thunderous 6'4 330 pound stature.
There's no question Jones would hand the Tigers' trenchmen a major boost:
The young man is an Electric Church of DL Doom....massive, intimidating and able to bring opponents to their knees in savage reverence.
Versatility: how many OL are also strong on the basketball court or played tight end well?
Speed: Emery is simply too fast for most 1 on 1 matchups to handle.
Technique: Jones continues to learn from the best.
Aggression: Emery Jones is a young man constantly facing the best DEs and DTs from Louisiana....this isn't some powderpuff competition....Louisiana High School football contains as much attrition as you're likely to find at that age level.
An offensive lineman who can do all the above on the field, remain a strong leader in the locker room, while becoming a community icon around Baton Rouge?
We just had to know more:
LONN: Last year in an interview with Matt Moscana, you said you didn't care if you played left or right tackle. Do you feel different now?
EMERY: Not at all!
LONN: So no preference? Do you think either is more important than the other?
EMERY: No I think they both have to block and fight every play. I can play both and I think they both are really important!
LONN: You've definitely shown you can do both!! Did you ever play any other positions?
EMERY: I played TE before high school. I also played DL before I started focusing on OL. I did DL until sophomore season.
LONN: So that's where the quickness comes from! Most OL guys will only play DL at most. That's awesome!
Who are the players you model your game after, in any position?
EMERY: Damien Lewis (LSU guard who now starts for the Seahawks).
LONN: Wowza! So you know what my next question has to be? You obviously witnessed the 2019 LSU squad, sending 5 OL to the NFL, you model your game after Damien Lewis,
I would imagine you've always been a Tigers fan, right? Coming from BR and such a high octane cradle of Tiger love like Catholic High, so my question has to be: who are the other teams that can push LSU for your signature the most?
EMERY: I would say FSU, Arkansas, or Tennessee!
LONN: What makes each one of those schools / programs up high on your list?
EMERY: Just the communication and bonds that were built. I feel like each of those coaches on those teams really have my best interest.
LONN: What's it like being recruited by Super Bowl / National title and Joe Moore Award winning O Line Coach James Cregg?
Has he laid out his plan for you at LSU?
EMERY: It feels great to know I'm blessed enough to be recognized for some of those accomplishments. He said he wanted me to come in and play some guard and move to tackle eventually if I wanted, too.
LONN: Emery, you know what it's like to be a champion, you just won a state title, including that crazy game vs Rummel in the playoffs, How good can Catholic be during your senior year?
EMERY: I think we have the potential to do really big things. Especially with the great guys we have on the team and the really hard workers. I think we have a big chance to go back and win another state title!
LONN: If you repeat, there's a big chance you'll have a lot to do with it. what do you think your role was in the team's victory last year ?
EMERY: I think my role was to be a leader and keep the guys cool and keep everyone together.
LONN: You're an incredibly quick OL, what workout or training exercise has helped you get quick at the line?
EMERY: Just things like the ladder, and I've also played basketball all my life. So I've always been really good and quick moving laterally.
LONN: Is there a go-to technique you use in your 1 on 1's? For DE and DTs? Or is it different to match the personnel?
EMERY: In season it is more of personnel thing. But my go to is probably a jump set because it allows me to get to the DT or DE first!
LONN: Who has been your biggest influence as far as learning the nuances of offensive line play?
EMERY: My ex head coach! He's a big OL guy and he knows everything about all of OL.
LONN: Gabe Fertita, right?
LONN: What was his biggest piece of advice for you that had a major impact?
EMERY: He just told me if I work hard enough the sky is the limit. He was really impactful on me and was always a big help and leader for me!
LONN: What is one major part of your game that scouts, recruiting services, opponents, and coaches are overlooking?
EMERY: I think people overlook how flexible I can be. I feel like I can pretty much block anybody on the field. I can block Corners, linemen, linebackers, or safeties. I feel like sometimes that's a little overlooked.
LONN: What did you do for your Mom for Mother's Day?
EMERY: I spent about 100 on different things. Then we boiled crawfish with the family.
LONN: Nice! That's what I'm talking about! Showing out for Moms!
When will you make your commitment known and how close are you?
EMERY: I'm not sure but sometime at the end of the summer.
LONN: Now just one more question, Emery: What is the first word that enters your mind when you think of LSU?
By LONN PHILLIPS SULLIVAN
Copyright 2021 Uninterrupted Writings Inc LLC
SHOUTOUTS: Emery's Mother Tanika! You've raised an incredible young man!
To all Mothers everywhere, I hope you had an amazing Mother's Day!
To My Mom: Thank You For Everything, You Are The Best Mother A Son Could Ever Ask For!