The first event of its kind on the West Coast, Jones will be one of 22 players from across the country participating in the event, which includes signees of the Southeastern Conference, Big Ten, Pac-12 and many other Division I leagues.
A 6-foot-8, 215-pound forward, Jones began his high school career in Chandler, Ariz., and is currently playing for La Lumiere School in LaPorte, Ind. So far this season Jones is averaging 11 points and nine rebounds for a balanced Lakers squad, which will play Thursday afternoon (1 p.m. CT) in the 2013 National High School Invitational on ESPNU. Jones is also shooting 58 percent from the floor this season after averaging 19.6 points and 10.6 rebounds as a junior at Basha High School (Ariz.).
La Lumiere is currently 25-6 on the year and ranked No. 11 in the ESPN 25 Power Rankings. St. Benedict’s, La Lumiere’s opponent on Thursday, is 28-1 overall and ranked No. 5 in that same poll.
Two other Tiger signees recently completed their senior seasons with state championships. Wes Clark led Romulus (Mich.) High School to a state title with a win over Detroit Southeastern (61-49). Romulus is ranked No. 24 by the ESPN 25 Power Rankings and topped then-No. 17 Pershing during that playoff run.
Known for his toughness and defensive prowess, Clark showed his all-around ability in a semifinal win over Grand Rapids Christian, scoring seven points and dishing nine assists to go with eight boards and four steals.
Clark was named first team all-state in Michigan for the second consecutive year and scored 12 points and dished five assists in a team-high 28 minutes in the state title game victory. Clark scored 10 of his 12 points in a third-quarter surge to put the game away and help the Eagles finish 27-1 on the season. Last season as a junior the gritty point guard averaged 18 points, 6.2 rebounds, 5.1 assists and 2.3 steals.
Incoming Tiger big man Johnathan Williams III led Memphis’ (Tenn.) Southwind High School to its first state crown last month and averaged 18.9 points and 9.5 rebounds on the year. Southwind (34-6) knocked off Dyer Country (76-53) in the title game and the 6-foot-9, 210-pound Williams scored 17 points on 7-of-10 shooting from the floor despite being sidelined most of the third period with foul trouble. The 2012 all-state pick also finished the game with six rebounds and two blocks in 22 minutes.
All-State honors in Tennessee will be announced later this month, but Williams helped Southwind finish with an 88-17 record over the last three seasons and saw his scoring average increase from 15.7 points as a junior to 18.9 points last season.
— MU Sports Information —