January 3, 2012

Time for Jenkins to decide


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LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. - Somewhere in Hamilton, Ga., there is a home with papers spread out all over the place. Each page is chocked full of statistics, depth charts, educational programs and everything else that might play into a college decision for one of the nation's top defensive football players.

"Every little bit of information, we have it all laid out," Rivals100 defensive end Jordan Jenkins said. "As soon as we get back, I'm going to look over it and compare it and then use that to make my decision and make sure I'm picking the right one."

Jenkins will not have too long to think things over one more time. He will head home after playing in the Under Armour All-America Game on Thursday night and make his college decision the following Monday.

For months, the battle for the 6-foot-3, 245-pound defender has been a two-team race between Alabama and Florida. But it is the other two schools in the four-team equation that have been making the largest push recently in hopes of catching up to the pack.

"Georgia and Auburn are really starting to recruit a lot harder than they have in the past," Jenkins said. "Those two are definitely recruiting me the hardest right now."

However, that doesn't appear to be making much of a difference. On Monday, Jenkins held his stance that he has pretty much decided he has the best idea about two schools.

"Now I'm getting to the point where I'm starting to have a good idea on one or two schools," he said. "I'm just trying to figure out which one of those two that I want to go to."

Not your typical high school football standout, Jenkins is a successful math and science student who plans on majoring in engineering in college, something he is factoring into his college decision in a major way.

"Florida, they have a real good engineering program," Jenkins said. "Georgia Tech obviously has the best, but I didn't think it was a good fit for me. I think Florida might have the best engineering plan and all of that out of all four of the schools. They have this nice little thing where you can try out each of the engineering majors they have and see which one you like your freshman year so you can see which one you want to do your sophomore year. I think they have the best one."

He said it would be tough to balance out how much he factors in education alongside football possibilities when picking a school. With a decision looming, Jenkins admitted he is ready to end the recruiting process and move on to the next stage in his life.

"I'm really looking forward to that," he said. "I was good with recruiting and all of that, but I'm just ready to get it all over with so I could spend more time getting ready to move on. At the start of the year, I was like, 'Alright, I want to spend as much time as I can in high school.' But now that it's dwindling down I'm ready to move on to the next level and ready to report to college and just start getting better."

During practices for the Under Armour game, Jenkins has been moved around the defense replicating the versatile nature in which he is being recruited. Most schools see Jenkins as an outside linebacker, while Florida is still sold on playing him at the hybrid Buck position.

"They said I'd be the Buck and I'd be playing opposite side of Ronald (Powell)," he said. "I don't know if Ronald would move over to the other side or if we'd both be some kind of Buck thing. I'm not too sure on that part of it. I just know I'll be playing Buck."

Spending the week at Disney World, Jenkins has plenty of opportunities to receive sales pitches from the six Gators commits also playing in the game. But his closest tie to Florida could be a close bond with UF's lone kicker commit.

"Me and Austin Hardin, we're great friends ever since the Rising Seniors game last year," he said. "Two nights ago, he came in and we were playing NCAA in my room. They've been selling me Florida pretty good."

Dozens of Army & Under Armour All American updates:

  • ITG Recruiting Ticker
  • Rivals Recruiting front page
  • Army AA Coverage page
  • Under Armour AA Coverage page
  • Rivals Recruiting Forum

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