RECRUITING: Wildcats Zoning In On Texas All-District Speedster
Updated: Jan 23
(Photo provided by Jalon Rock)
NAME: Jalon Rock
HIGH SCHOOL: Mansfield Summit (Arlington, TX)
TOP SCHOOLS: Air Force, Midwestern State, Navy, UIW, Weber State
If we had to choose a way to describe Jalon Rock, a 5’10”, 170-pound cornerback and returner out of Arlington, Texas, “speed” would absolutely be the first word that comes to mind.
Rock just finished up his senior season at Mansfield Summit High School, located in Texas’ Metroplex, and he had a killer year. As a versatile defensive back, playing on the outside or in the slot, Rock had three interceptions and broke up 17 passes.
Those numbers were good enough to earn him first-team all-district honors as a defensive back.
As a special teams asset, Rock did a little bit of punt returning, but it’s his kick-off returning that is truly game-changing. In his final season in high school, Rock took five kick-offs to the crib.
Five. Two of which came in the same game. That dynamic ability to return kicks earned him yet another spot on the all-district first-team as a return specialist.
His 4.3-forty speed, combined with his vision to see where his blockers are going to be, make him a lethal weapon on any team with which he decides to sign. His weapon-like speed was a critical piece to his high school track team’s 4x100 relay; that team ultimately went on to win the state championship. Considering how All-American Rashid Shaheed has been made a focal point in Jay Hill’s phenomenal special teams units, it should be easy for Wildcat fans to imagine how easily Rock could fit in at Weber State.
With COVID-19 impacting the entire NCAA, the recruiting process hasn’t exactly been what Rock was thinking it would be. “It’s been weird because we can’t go on visits and coaches can’t come to us so it’s all virtual. […] It’s harder to get your name out there.”
Rock is not just focused about a school’s on-field performance. He tries to take a comprehensive look at what a school has to offer him.
“I want a family environment,” Rock told Weber State Weekly in a phone call earlier this week. “I want to be where the coaches can put me to be the best player and best person that I can be. I like the locations and I like how the schools are laid out.”
On the flip side, Rock mentioned to us that if a school has coaches that won’t push him to be the best player that he can be, he would consider it a deal breaker.
As far as Weber State goes and what he likes about the school and program, Rock told us, “We texted probably about a month or so ago. It’s picked up the last couple of weeks. The location is different, it’d be different to get out of Texas. I like the views; it’s right inside the mountains. I like the locker room, the weight room and the campus.”
When we asked Rock what Weber State is selling him on, he stated, “They talk about how I can compete and try to play early. They told me that my speed can be a good need for the team and that I can provide that for them.”
While he hasn’t been able to visit campus, Rock said, “We did a virtual tour, it was me and my family and one other player. They had coaches around the area that showed us different parts.” (For more insight as to how the coaching staff conducts those virtual tours, Wide Receivers Coach/Recruiting Coordinator, Jared Ursua, described the process in a recent podcast with Weber State Weekly.)
Weber State isn’t alone in their competition for Rock’s services. The young man has offers from Navy, Air Force, West Texas, Midwestern State and University of the Incarnate Word, among others. He plans on announcing his commitment prior to signing day.
Off the field, Rock enjoys spending time with his friends and gaming on his brand-new PlayStation 5. He isn’t completely sure on what he’d like to major in, but he’s seriously considering sociology.
Waldo’s Magic 8 Ball Prediction
After looking at Rock’s film and talking with the young playmaker, we had to consult with Waldo’s Magic 8 Ball and see what the chances are of him playing for Jay Hill in Ogden. The response: Signs point to yes. Rock is a winner and he wants to win games. When you look at his offers and what schools he’s considering, Weber State gives him the best chance to do that. The need for speed on the outside is something that the coaching staff has made apparent, as well, making Weber State and Jalon Rock a match made in football heaven.