Simeon High School (Chicago, Illinois) defensive back Jalen Griffin verbally committed to Mount Union last week, although he did not ink his letter of intent on National Signing Day.
Griffin held offers from nine schools, including UW-Platteville, St. Cloud, Minnesota-Crookston, Southwest Minnesota State, Upper Iowa, Olivet Nazarene University, Mount Union, and a preferred walk-on offer from Campbell University. Griffin told me that he had interest from the coaching staffs at Toledo, Wyoming, North Dakota, Western Illinois, Southern Illinois, and Minnesota-Duluth, but they never extended scholarship offers to him. He took an unofficial visit to Memorial Stadium for Indiana’s game against Wake Forest on September 24, 2016.
The 5’9,” 160-pound Griffin told me that if one of the previously mentioned schools had given him an offer, his collegiate decision would have changed.
In December, Jalen Griffin was invited to attend the NoKaOi Senior Bowl in Honolulu, Hawaii, which will take place from July 4-11, 2017.
Why did he choose Mount Union over other schools?
“They had everything I wanted,” Griffin said. ”Championship program, great job placement, post graduation, a history of players in the NFL, lowest tuition out of all my other options, and great food!”
Griffin cited many other points for his decision, including the chance he has to compete as a freshman, saying, “Another reason why I chose Mount Union is because I have a great chance to start.”
Shawn Collins, Mount Union’s receivers coach was Griffin’s primary recruiter. While Griffin played various defensive back positions during his four years at Simeon, Collins and the Raiders recruited him as a cornerback.
Mount Union had 17 defensive backs on their 2016 roster, with four seniors set to graduate this year. That means Griffin will join 13 returning DBs along with multiple other incoming freshmen.
Did he have anything to say to Mount Union fans? Well, he kept it brief:
“It’s work time! Raider Nation!”
All quotes are obtained firsthand unless otherwise noted.
Update: An original version of this post stated that Griffin had signed with Mount Union. That is false. He did not sign his letter of intent with Mount Union, but just verbally committed to play for them.