Once a verbal commitment to Louisiana Tech, Parkway defensive back Johnathan Jones told The Times Monday he plans to sign with Division II Northeastern State University in Tahlequah, Oklahoma, in February.
The Times All-City first-team member started his career at Evangel before transferring to Parkway for his final season of high school eligibility.
“I talked to the head coach up there (Rob Robinson) and he said he’d love for me to come up there and play for him. He wants me to bring some more guys from Louisiana. He said he really needed us,” Jones said. “He told me I could make a difference.”
Former North DeSoto standout Tim Howard is currently the only Louisiana player listed on the RiverHawks’ roster. NSU finished just 2-9 overall last season in its third campaign under Robinson.
The 6-foot-1, 185-pound Jones was a ball hawk in the secondary for coach David Feaster. Jones recorded 33 ½ tackles, including 27 solo, with 7 interceptions and 5 defended passes. He caught 8 Justin Rogers’ passes for 157 yards and 4 touchdowns, while rushing two times for 26 yards.
He said he still plans to take additional visits.
“I’ve talked with coaches from Southeastern Louisiana and Jackson State, and I plan to take visits there because you never know what might happen,” Jones said.
Jones said he visited Northeastern with Parkway’s Nick Soto and Airline’s D’Kameron White, along with Evangel’s Aaron Calcote and Gaston Richardson.
He decommitted from Tech last February citing “recent political Events” when Governor John Bel Edwards indicated funding for college football could be affected by Louisiana’s budget crisis. Jones was later dismissed from the Evangel football team by coach Byron Dawson for an unrelated reason, before ending up in south Bossier and being ruled eligible by the LHSAA to play his final season with the Panthers.
Jones is one of more than 100 area football players eligible to attend The Times Sports Awards presented by McDonald’s – Griggs Enterprise, Inc., a banquet in May featuring Peyton Manning as the guest speaker.