Washburn's Jeff Jones raises recruiting profile in prep all-star game

  • Article by: JIM PAULSEN , Star Tribune
  • Updated: January 7, 2014 - 6:07 PM

With an impressive performance in the Under Armour All-America High School Football Game last week, Minneapolis Washburn running back Jeff Jones may have helped himself and put a dent in the University of Minnesota’s football future at the same time.

Jones was named the MVP for his team, Team Nitro, after putting up 72 yards of total offense and scoring a touchdown in the game played at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. Team Nitro lost to Team Highlight 31-21 but Jones’ outing boosted his national profile. He gave a verbal committment to Minnesota after his junior season but has since reopened his recruiting. The reigning Mr. Minnesota Football has an official visit to Florida scheduled for Jan. 24. Numerous reports have indicated that Florida and Michigan have offered Jones a scholarship.

Jones has stated repeatedly that he is still committed to Minnesota but wants to make sure he hasn’t overlooked any options.

“I just want to take my official visit [to Florida] and see what the coaching staff has to offer,” Jones said in a report in the Orlando Sentinel.

The first day that Jones can sign a national letter of intent is Feb. 5. There is no word on when he is expected to announce his plans.

It’s all about timing

The timing for Wayzata senior Alayna Sonnesyn to head to the U.S. Cross-Country Skiing Championships in Soldier Hollow, Utah, was ideal.

Sonnesyn, one of the state’s top Nordic ski racers, trained in Colorado for a week before heading to Utah, where racing began Saturday. Sonnesyn, No. 14 in the girls’ under-18 national rankings, won’t be home until late Wednesday or Thursday. In addition to representing herself well on a national stage — she finished fourth Sunday in the B Finals of the 1.5 K sprint race — but she will have missed nearly all of the recent brutal cold stretch.

“I heard about the weather there,” she said. “It will be nice to sleep in my own bed, but I’m glad I’ll miss it.”

Worth noting

• Chaska’s Elle Thompson set a school rebounding record last week in the Hawks’ 78-38 victory over St. Paul Como Park. The 6-f1 senior forward had 738 career rebounds going into Tuesday’s game at Edina.

• Wayzata finished second and Minnetonka third in the Gold Division of the Maroon and Gold Boys Swimming and Diving Meet on Saturday at the University of Minnesota. The winner, Creighton Prep (Neb.), set a meet record with 635 points.


Jim Paulsen • 612-673-7737

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