The 90 Illini #69: Brevyn Jones
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The path that Brevyn Jones followed to be a redshirt freshman offensive lineman at Illinois is kind of crazy. Freshman year at Mississippi State in 2019. Then Joe Moorhead is fired and Mike Leach is hired, so Jones transfers to Illinois. He applies for and receives a waiver to play right away but in a way it doesn't matter. The season he applied for didn't count because of Covid.
So his path to "redshirt freshman offensive lineman on 2021 Illini":
- Enroll at Mississippi State
- Redshirt as a freshman.
- Coach fired.
- Transfer to Illinois.
- Apply for, and receive, waiver for immediate eligibility.
- Entire season canceled in August and then un-canceled in September.
- Play in two games but neither counts towards eligibility because of Covid.
- Coach fired.
So his head coaches have been Joe Moorhead, Mike Leach, Lovie Smith, and Bret Bielema... and this fall he's just a redshirt freshman.
69. Brevyn Jones
Uniform number: 76
Year in school: Redshirt Freshman (without the Covid waiver, 3 years to play 3; with the Covid waiver, technically 4 years to play 4)
Height: 6'-5" -- Weight: 270 lbs.
Hometown: Center Point, Alabama
Former School: Transfer from Mississippi State
Five best offers: Mississippi State, Tulane, Appalachian State, Florida Atlantic, UAB
Tom Cruise rating:
2020 statistics: Played in 2 games.
I missed one thing above: he was a Tulane recruit before having a big senior year of high school, getting a Mississippi State offer, and flipping to MSU. So Tulane, then Mississippi State, then Illinois, and now, after all of that, he's a freshman.
But he's also a junior (in school). So he'll be one of the 4-5-6 players. All scholarships are guaranteed for four years now (so that a student athlete has the ability to receive the degree they were promised). But beyond that, it's up to the coaches if they want them to return for a fifth year (and now, because of Covid, a sixth year). Redshirt freshmen from 2019 are now 3rd-year freshmen (2019 was a redshirt year; 2020 didn't count), so they'll play this year and next year and then it will be up to the coaching staff whether they want to bring them back for 2023 and 2024. Some might just play four years (and transfer elsewhere with two years of eligibility). Some might play one more year and then transfer for their 6th year. Some might play all six years in Champaign.
I just wrote the Evan Kirts 90 Illini post, and I think the path for Jones is the same as it is for Kirts, so let me just cut-and-paste that text here:
The fourth tackle spot really hasn't been claimed yet, I don't think. With the old staff it looked like Brevyn Jones had the inside track, but this spring it felt like Moses Okpala was making big strides. There's also Blaise Sparks (just a second-year tackle) who already has the size and now needs the technique. And the fourth guy chasing that spot in the two-deep: Evan Kirts.
So this is a massively important camp for those four. The winner of that battle for "4th tackle" this fall is also likely the winner of "starting tackle opposite Julian Pearl" in 2022.
Now, Jones is the shortest of those four (and weighs the least). So it's possible there's a move to guard in his future. Lots to learn this fall. First step for Jones: keep bulking up and see if he can win that fourth tackle spot.