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Midtown Monitor

Hornet Cornerback to Remain in Orange and Black

GTR Sports Writer

SHUTDOWN CORNER: Senior cornerback D.J. Jones and the BTW Hornets are on a mission to repeat as state champs. Jones, a life-long OSU fan, has commited to play for the Cowboys next season.

Photo by MIKE MOGUIN for Union Boundary

There is nothing like getting to go to the school where you’ve always envisioned attending and playing football.

Booker T. Washington’s D.J. Jones will see that dream become reality next year when he goes to Oklahoma State University. The senior cornerback, who stands 6-0, 175 pounds, committed to the Cowboys last February.

“I love it. It is a stress reliever,” Jones said. “I don’t have to talk to any other schools and I’m just focused on school and football now that I know I’m going to my dream school.”

Once OSU made an offer, his mind was made up.

“The recruiting process started really slow for me. At the time, I had interest from OSU, Arkansas State and North Texas. After I got (an offer from) OSU, I really didn’t look into other schools. I talked to other schools, but OSU was really the only Big D-I that offered me and that’s what I decided to choose.”

Jones also had unofficial visit a year ago at Notre Dame.

There are strong family ties to the Stillwater institution for Jones.

“I have family that went to Oklahoma State and it just felt like home,” Jones said. “It’s close enough that if I need something, I can just call my mom. She’s right down the street.”

Jones has an uncle, Glen Jackson, who played at Oklahoma State in the early 2000s. His cousin, Jeremy Smith, played running back from 2009-13.

“I remember going to his games and just watching him and loving the atmosphere,” Jones said.

Bedlam are always the games he relished, especially the Cowboy wins of 2011 and 2014 against the Sooners.

He is proud to say he bleeds orange and black. Of course, he already does with BTW.
As of submission of this story, the Hornets were ranked second in the state with a record of 2-2 overall and 1-0 in District 6AII. They were coming off a 43-6 win against Bartlesville on Sept. 21 and preparing for key showdown at No. 5 Bixby a week later.

Before the victory over the Bruins, BTW was healing from an off week after dropping two out of their first thee games. The losses came to teams out of state. The win came against Bishop Kelley (24-14 on Aug. 31).

“The benefit of having an off week is we had a lot of players injured from the first game to the third game and that’s what really killed us in our losses. But, we have people who are coming back, and hopefully, the whole team will be healthy,” Jones said.

“Starting the season 1-2 is really challenging. It’s not something that I’m used to, nor the team,” Jones added. “But, we went against the best teams I think we’ll face all season, which is the team from Mississippi, Horn Lake (a 36-7 loss) and the Arkansas team (a 29-28 setback to North Little Rock). Now that we know we have faced the best teams by far, we can go out and play Hornet football.”

Jones said that there was a big lesson in not being complacent.

“Just because we won a state championship last year, we now know that we’re not the same team and we have to rebuild. We have a lot of new spots on the field that players didn’t play last year,” he said. “So, this is a big rebuilding stage.”

Jones’ favorite NFL player is Jalen Ramsey of Jacksonville.

“He’s very confident,” Jones said of Ramsey. “I’m not the type who talks smack like him, but I like how he plays. He’s very physical and aggressive and I mimic him a lot.”
Playing with Dax Hill, who committed to Michigan on Sept. 18, Thomas Grayson and other teammates has been a blessing.

“We actually have six D-1 players on our team,” Jones said. “You don’t get that very often. Usually, you’ll have one or two, so, it’s a big blessing to have them playing on our team. They are great leaders and I love playing with them.”

The Hornets can be expected to be on a roll through the rest of the schedule, Jones said.

“Yes sir,” he said. “We definitely will get started and our motto is to finish what we started and we’re going to finish the right way. That’s the plan.”

That, of course, is to win state. And, started, they have.

After Bixby, games against Shawnee at home (Oct. 5), at Sapulpa (Oct. 12), Muskogee at home (Oct. 18), at Ponca City (Oct. 26) and the regular season finale at home against Sand Springs (Nov. 2) are on the remainder of the schedule.

Updated 10-16-2018

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