Datone Jones returning for senior year

Just got the confirmation from Datone Jones that he is returning for his senior season.

Jones finished with 41 tackles, three sacks and 6.5 tackles-for-loss as a redshirt junior, a year removed from a broken foot suffered early in training camp. Jones struggled out of the gate but seemed to find a home as a hybrid end/tackle, using his big frame in the interior to help free up the perimeter during UCLA’s late-season surge.

Jones, along with running back Johnathan Franklin, explored leaving for the NFL Draft, but the deadline for entry was yesterday. Franklin said last week that he would return to play for Noel Mazzone, but Jones’ status was undetermined until recently.

It will be interesting to see how UCLA uses Jones next season, as the Bruins have more returning at end than at tackle. Damien Holmes, Keenan Graham, Iuta Tepa, Owamagbe Odighizuwa, Aramide Olaniyan and Sam Tai coming back at defensive end and Cassius Marsh, Donovan Carter, Brandon Willis and Seali’i Epenesa back at defensive tackle.

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  • Bob

    So many times guys leave early, lots of reasons to do it but just as many to stick around. Raheem Moore was terrible this year for the Broncos. He made lots of money up front and should be fine in life, but his NFL career may be over. If he stuck it out one more season at UCLA he would be more seasoned for the NFL. Another example from yesteryear is Tommy Maddox.

  • The Blur

    Wise move. Last year wasn’t his best but it’s no secret he has potential. A year under Mora should benefit him tremendously.

  • BruinFaithful

    Finally, somebody with some sense.

  • Anonymous

    With our personnel, I’d like to see the new DC roll out a 3-4 scheme. How does a two-deep like this strike you all:

    NT: Marsh, Epenesa, Carter
    RDE: Jones, Holmes
    LDE: Owa, Willis
    OLB: Olaniyan, Tepa
    OLB: Kendricks, Graham
    ILB: Zumwalt, Golper
    ILB: Larimore, Bowens

  • BruinFaithful

    DAMN Jon, I didn’t know you had moves like Jagger.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oGpExA1T9wQ

  • NY

    anon, what about Dietrich Riley? What’s up with him?

  • Coach Thom

    Sensible move on Datone’s part. With the new staff and with a defensive-minded head coach, Datone will benefit greatly.

  • Bruintx

    Lets be real for a minute… what was he going to do otherwise? I think he would have been 50/50 to even be drafted this year. This was (should have been) a no-brainer for him…

    Here’s hoping Mora turns him into a real beast next season and then Datone can truly reap the rewards he has coming to him!

  • Anonymous

    Dietrich is redshirting in 2012. May turn into a Medical Redshirt if things do not improve. Let’s wish him a speedy recovery

  • Anonymous

    Supposed to say Medical Retirement…my bad.

  • Nestor

    UCLA flips 5-star DT Ellis McCarthy. Irony is ex-Wash. asst Demetrice Martin helped flip him from Cal. RT @IAMKLEMM 8 CLAP!!!!!

  • Lifetime Bruin Fan

    Brandon Huffman from Bruin Report Online is reporting that five star recruit
    Ellis McCarthy has committed to UCLA

    GO BRUINS.

  • Parent

    Anthony Barr is moving to LB.

  • Bruin Gold

    With our new strength training coach, Datone Jones would benefit from a year at UCLA to become a BEAST with more weight and strength. THEN he would be ready for the NFL for a long money-making career. Otherwise, he would be a bust.

  • localbruin

    Where was he considering going? I certainly hope he wasn’t serious about getting into the NFL.

    He is what he is, but his label as a bust last year is all on Gold for building him up as a “man among boys” and “NFL ready”, and “blowing up practice”.

    Good luck to Datone.

  • http://www.insidesocal.com/ucla Jon Gold

    HAHA you’re still on that localbruin? Fun.

  • localbruin

    You bet. Not grudging, just never got an explanation.

    Hoping the next fall practice write ups are more balanced, assuming you aren’t writing for ESPN by then.

  • http://www.insidesocal.com/ucla Jon Gold

    What kind of explanation? Jones absolutely embarrassed the offensive line on a daily basis during fall camp. Every single reporter wrote it that way. We all saw the same thing. I have no idea if he tightened up early and pressed and then lost his confidence. We all asked him the same questions, he had no answers. Sometimes it doesn’t work out? I just don’t know what I can say?

  • localbruin

    Perhaps a more objective review of the OL might’ve tempered your (and others’) enthusiasm for Datone’s dominance…in practice…and provided the balanced commentary that would’ve kept Datone in better perspective.

    As long suffering fans, your new readership will continue to seize upon any whiff of material improvement like drowning rats to a piece of driftwood. Bearing in mind the many years of happy talk followed by disappointment, a more sober treatment of the team’s potential might be in order?

    This is my final kick at this dead horse. I can now, finally, accept your explanation as a complete and unconditional apology and steadfast vow to never repeat this grievous but unintentional error!