#30in30 Day 14: Cardale Jones Is Staying And Ignoring The Sports Hype

I don’t follow college football much except for bowl games. What I do know is that Ohio State hasn’t produced any great NFL quarterbacks. The last drafted quarterback out of OSU was 2006 Heisman winner Troy Smith after they got washed by Tebow’s Gators. And where is he now?

I watched the championship game and was more impressed with Zeke Elliott than I was with 3rd string QB, Cardale Jones. Although once you carry your team to a championship, you’re automatic catapulted into the hype machine of American sports media. ESPN all but drew up the press release to say Jones was entering the draft. Jones is the 3rd hottest QB in the draft right now, after Jameis Winston and 2014 Heisman winner Marcus Mariota. But the press conference he held this afternoon gave some perspective.

In the presser, he broke down why he was staying at OSU for another year

After three games, [the NFL] was out of the question. A first-round draft pick means nothing to me without my education.

That level of humility and self-awareness is hard to find in young athletes. We never see this in basketball. Some of these athletes never return to complete their education. And you can’t blame them when they’re raking in millions from endorsements and contracts. Football has always been different though. Many draftees are 21-23 years old and stayed in college 4-5 years. The great Aaron Rodgers didn’t even render any D1 offers and went to community college before transferring and becoming the starting QB for the Cal Bears. Let’s make no mistake about it – Cardale Jones has pretty nice size for a QB and a nice arm downfield from what I saw. He’s 6’5 and 250 lbs; the same size as Cam Newton. However, based on 3 games, who knows what his true ceiling could be right now. Jameis Winston, as ridiculous as he is off-the-field, returned after the Seminoles’ won last year’s championship to solidify his case as being ready for the NFL; at least from a talent and skills standpoint.

I do know that I’ll be interested in what direction Urban Meyer will go next season at the QB position. I’ll watch a few more OSU games than I ever would. Everyone was a prisoner of the moment. It happens often in sports. If Cardale Jones is in fact going to start, I hope to see him continue the current relevance he has at the helm of a defending championship team.

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