Teven Jones signed a letter of intent with the University of Virginia in November, thinking at the time he would go through a full postgraduate year at Fishburne Military Academy (VA). The 6’0″, 180-pound point guard played well in 16 regular season games at Fishburne, but he won’t be suiting up this evening as the team takes on Southern Virginia College JV. Instead, Jones is preparing to enroll at UVa.
Once enrolled next week, the former A.L. Brown (Kannapolis, N.C.) standout will begin practicing with the Cavaliers. He won’t, however, see any game action and instead will red-shirt this year.
Fishburne Military Academy (VA) head coach Ed Huckaby, Jr., first thought of the idea of Jones enrolling early after seeing that former Cavaliers K.T. Harrell and James Johnson had decided to transfer. A former college coach himself, Huckaby can sympathize with Tony Bennett’s issue of being down to nine scholarship players. Most importantly, he saw this as a good opportunity for Jones.
“To put the story in context, I coached Division 1 for 11 years. I went to Wright State when Paul Biancardi took over, and we had only nine scholarship players. It was pretty tough practicing with mostly walk-ons on the scout team. We had to just live through it. I saw UVa lost two guys and I thought about it, so I thought I’d run [the idea of Jones leaving Fishburne to enroll early at UVa] by my staff. My whole staff played college basketball, so they figured this would be a great opportunity for Teven to move on to Virginia early. That’s what we do here…help guys move on,” Huckaby said. “We have 10 guys going to play D1, so it’s not like we won’t be competitive. Don’t get me wrong. We’re sure going to miss him, but we’re doing what’s best of the individual.
“What Teven brings is this. Since he will be red-shirting, really every practice is going to be like a game for him. Sometimes, you get guys on the scout team wondering why they are there and not with the top group. He’s not going to have an attitude and mope about not being with the main group. He’ll get to learn the system, get better, and so forth. In the end, this is a win/win for everyone involved.”
Jones averaged 18.9 points per game and had a five-to-two assist-to-turnover ratio through 16 games this season. He shot around 31-percent from beyond the arc and 57-percent from the field in that span.
“Two things are truly his strengths right now. One is quickness, and the other is competitive drive,” Huckaby said. “You need to be able to compete night-in and night-out in the conference he’ll be playing in, and he has the drive to do it. Also, he has supreme confidence in his offensive game. He’s a humble guy in terms of his personality, but he is confident in who he is on the court.”
Coach Huckaby discussed those things Jones will have to work on to further develop his game.
“Like all young players, he needs to keep focused on defense. You can’t take plays off,” he said. “Sometimes he’ll look great, but in other segments he gets lost. All freshmen are like that, though. He has a high IQ. He’ll fit in perfect, because to me it’s about fit. We play some of what UVa does in terms of schemes defensively. He’ll do well.”
Jones graduated with a 3.6 GPA out of Brown, so academics weren’t behind his decision to attend Fishburne. Instead, he wanted to get more exposure from major D1 coaches. UVa came through with an offer in September and he accepted on the spot.
The news of Jones’ enrollment was first reported by the Augusta Free Press. Check out the story by following the link below.
Bennett Comments On Jones To “Hoos Talking”
Frank Maloney and Jim Hobgood, hosts of Hoos Talking, interviewed Cavaliers head coach Tony Bennett on January 4. Coach Bennett dished on his 2012 recruiting class, and here is what he said about Jones:
“Teven Jones is probably the one that people wouldn’t know the most about. He’s at a prep school. He played football in high school. He was a very good high school basketball player. Tough. Hard-nosed. Can guard the ball. A complete offensive player, and a nice athlete. Again I like his completeness, his ability to shoot it and put it on the floor. And with his athleticism hopefully he can heat up the ball.”
Check out the full interview here on TheSabre.com. (Bennett’s interview is in Segment 1 on January 4.)