Jackson State, Jalon Jones

Jalon Jones, former Jackson State/B-CU QB, to start vs. SC State

Charlotte QB Jalon Jones is set to start for his fourth school in four years, including a stint at Jackson State under Deion Sanders.

When former Jackson State and Bethune-Cookman quarterback Jalon Jones lines up at quarterback for Charlotte on Saturday against South Carolina State, a lot of things will be new for the grad student.

Jones, playing for his fourth program in three seasons,  will face a South Carolina State program he went up against last season. He was the starter for Bethune-Cookman as SC State came up with a 33-9 win in Daytona Florida. It was Jones’ worst game of the season as a passer, as he completed just 8 of 23 passes for 127 yards, but he did run for 87 yards — including a 40-yarder.

It’s been a long, winding road to the fledgling FBS program. A highly-recruited player in the 2019 class, Jones committed to the University of Florida and joined the program as an early enrollee in 2019. He ran into legal troubles that saw him end up at Jackson State.

Jalon Jones landed at Jackson State that fall, where he played in 11 games as a true freshman in 2019. He completed 54-of-111 passes for 882 yards and nine touchdowns that season. Jones also showed off his versatility, running for 395 yards on 93 carries while playing for head coach John Hendrick.

Deion Sanders, Jackson State, Jalon Jones

Just after SWAC postponed its 2020 season due to the pandemic, the course of the program and Jones’ career was changed when Deion Sanders was hired as Jackson State head coach. Jalon Jones started the first five games of the 2021 spring season under Deion Sanders before taking a backseat to Quincy Casey against Alabama A&M. Jones completed 55.6 percent of his passes and threw for 12 touchdowns to just three interceptions in those five games.

The Shedeur Sanders Era was clearly coming in the fall, so Jones left JSU and landed at Mississippi Delta Community College in fall of 2021. He then made his return to the SWAC, signing to Bethune-Cookman. B-CU had a forgettable 2022 season, but Jones was solid, completing 57 percent of his passes and throwing for 14 touchdowns to seven interceptions. He also showed off his legs, gaining better than 800 yards on the ground while running for five touchdowns. 

The end of the 2022 season saw Bethune-Cookman show Terry Sims the door, meaning that Jones would be playing for his fifth college head coach in five years. Meanwhile, Charlotte hired Biff Poggi as its head coach. Poggi coached Jalon Jones at St. Frances Academy in Maryland, and brought in the graduate transfer to help him re-configure the program. 

“Me and Coach Poggi stayed in contact since I played for him in high school,” Jones told Niner Times. “He’s always been a great man, somebody that I’ve always been able to call whenever I had an issue. He’s a great coach and somebody that’s going to critique you hard, but he’s also going to love you even harder.”

Jones and Poggi will look to take advantage of a South Carolina State defense that was totally overmatched in Week Zero vs. Jackson State. 

Jalon Jones, former Jackson State/B-CU QB, to start vs. SC State
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