"Excited" '21 Class Cornerback Jaden McGill Talks Michigan State Offer
East Lansing, MI-- After hearing from the previous Michigan State coaching staff dating back to December, Oak Park (IL) River Forest 2021 ATH Jaden McGill was recently in touch with the new Spartan coaching staff and picked up an offer from Spartans over the weekend.
Spartan Nation caught up with McGill to discuss his offer from the Spartans and the 6-foot, 190-pound standout said that he found out about his offer from Michigan State tight ends coach Ted Gilmore, who told him the offer is to play defensive back, where he caught the eye of the coaching staff.
“Coach Gilmore reached out to me yesterday and we had a conversation and he told me that if I can be a DB - because I play multiple positions, he said ‘If you’re willing to come play cornerback, then we’ve got an offer, Coach Tucker really likes you at DB and thinks that you can help,’ and we’re just going to keep in touch.”
When it comes to his offer from the Spartans, McGill said that he was obviously excited to hear the news and said that it was one his family and friends were excited about as well and added one of his coaches, who used to play at Michigan State, also reached out to congratulate him about the offer.
“I was really happy, my parents weren’t in the house, they were out doing stuff and I called them and they were really happy, I was on FaceTime with them because Michigan State - when you’re in Illinois, you hear about U of I (Illinois), Michigan, Michigan State, Iowa because that’s all in our area,” he said. “So to get my first Big Ten offer from Michigan State, that was just big. One of my coaches played at Michigan State too, and he reached out to me and congratulated me. I went and talked to my friends and they were all happy and they were happy for me.”
McGill, who heard from defensive line coach Ron Burton, when the Spartans originally started showing interest, said that he thinks highly of the Spartan program and the impact Mel Tucker and his new staff have made in their short time in East Lansing.
“The conversation, it went really well,” McGill said of his talk with Gilmore. “Not just him, but the entire staff, the new coaches, the returning coaches, I like the direction that they’re heading with the new motto of ‘Relentless’ and I think coach Tucker and his coaches have made a big impact at Michigan State and they’ve only been there for a couple of months. I can see the impact he’s done with the program already in these couple of months, so it’s amazing. All of the coaches are outstanding, I talked to a couple of graduate assistants too and had a conversation with them too.”
Because on-campus visits aren’t currently permitted under the NCAA’s recruiting shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic, McGill had to cancel his visit to Michigan State that was scheduled for Friday, March 27th, but plans on rescheduling his visit. McGill also told Spartan Nation that he had to postpone visits to Western Michigan last week and a visit to Iowa as well.
A standout athlete, who is capable of playing a number of different positions on both sides of the ball, McGill holds offers from Kansas State, Ball State, Eastern Michigan, Central Michigan, Buffalo, Ball State, and Toledo.
“It’s very exciting,” McGill said of the recruiting process. “But it’s crazy because all of the pressure, starting in youth league, everyone wants to play D-1 or just play college football in general and for me, now that I have those offers, it’s crazy, because it’s a dream come true.”
In his time being recruited by Kansas State, McGill had the opportunity to talk to new Spartan defensive coordinator Scott Hazelton, who held the same position at Kansas State last year.
McGill said that he feels his relationship with Hazelton is one that’s been good, although the two have only spoken over the phone, but added that he’s heard good things about Hazelton from former players and looks forward to meeting him when he does visit Michigan State.
“I would say our relationship, it’s pretty good over the phone,” he said. “I’ve watched a lot of game highlights of Kansas State and I’ve seen the defenses that they’ve run and I’ve heard one of the old players who played at my school was coached by him at Wyoming and they had great things to say about him. So in my eyes, he’s a great guy and he’s a great defensive coach and all of the other guys, former players, and other coaches back him up about his personality as a person. I can’t wait to get to Michigan State and meet him face-to-face.”
While he has played quarterback, wide receiver, linebacker and defensive back at the high school level and is as a versatile, athletic and physical, McGill first described himself as a team-first player and a competitor.
“You can put me at any position and I’m going to give you my 110%, I’m not going to complain,” he said. “That’s exactly what happened with my high school right now, I’ve never played quarterback, I was a receiver, corner, outside linebacker and my sophomore year, we needed a quarterback and he asked me. I didn’t complain, I ended up winning the battle and I became our starting quarterback and we had a pretty good season too. I just told coach, I’m going to have fun, enjoy life and enjoy being able to play football right now and win games and always be competing. I want to be a competitor, I won’t be complaining to a coach about what position I’m playing, I want to be on the field helping my team win.”
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