Nacogdoches’ Jaylon Lane receives 31st Division I FBS offer from reigning BCS National Champions Florida State
By Jordan Early, Media specialist with NISD
A top college football recruit with a stunning 31 Division I offers takes the field next fall as a Nacogdoches High School Dragon.
As the list of college suitors grows for the Nacogdoches native and current NHS junior Jaylon Lane, so does the media interest in the 6’-2”, defensive back.
Reigning national champions, Florida State University, broke the 30-mark on Thursday and became Lane’s third offer in a week — Florida last Friday and Georgia on Wednesday.
Lane began his football career in Nacogdoches in eighth grade. However, when his father’s job required a move, the family packed up and moved west. The teen landed at San Angelo Central High School where he played through the 2013 season.
“It was a little difficult at the time,” Lane said. “Fortunately, another job opportunity opened up in East Texas and allowed us to move back and be close to family and finish my last year with the friends I grew up with.”
One more season of high school ball and then on to college, although Lane hasn’t decided yet which offer he’ll accept.
He hasn’t had long to consider them, with the first Division I offer only arriving in February. Considered a slow start by some at a time when schools begin wooing top players as early as their sophomore years.
Lane apparently needed a little jumpstart for his future college career, which came with a stand-out performance and MVP honors during a Rivals.com camp in March.
Now, he has made his way to number 73 nationwide on the ESPN Top 300 list and to number 10 in the state.
“I feel like people have stopped sleeping on me,” Lane said. “But that’s the thing that motivates me and keeps me going. People are starting to know my name and they’re starting to hear about me… It’s all a blessing.”
As of April 25, Lane has acquired offers from the following Division I FBS Schools: Arizona State, Arkansas, Arkansas State, Boise State, Florida, Florida State, Georgia, Georgia State, Houston, Kentucky, Louisiana Tech, Louisville, LSU, Miami, Michigan State, Mississippi State, Missouri, Northern Illinois, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Ole Miss, South Alabama, Syracuse, Texas A&M, Texas State, Texas Tech, Utah State, Wake Forest, and Washington State (31).
The defensive back brings a great combination of size and quickness to the Dragons. As a junior at San Angelo Central High School, Lane recorded five interceptions and 46 tackles, while averaging almost 46-yards on kickoff returns, including a 108-yard return for a touchdown.
Nacogdoches High School head football coach Bobby Reyes touted the junior cornerback’s “outstanding ball skills” and “excellent” work ethic.
Lane’s homecoming season will be met with an immense amount of Division I talent.
The Dragons’ 2014 schedule opens at home with a tough match-up with 2013 3A state runner-up Kilgore, a highly talented Hallsville team on the road, and 2013 3A state champions Carthage on the road. Not to mention, they also face the addition of Lufkin and 5A state semi-finalist Ennis to the already competitive district.
Seven, class of 2015 players in the Dragon’s schedule line up have received more than 50 combined Division I FBS football offers and rank in the 247Sports’ Top 150 in the state.
“It’s great for me to go against the top competition,” Lane said. “I really feel like I can compete with [the best]… To be able to go against guys with Division I offers in my district will really get me ready for the next level.”
Nacogdoches should boast one of the best secondaries in East Texas this fall, headlined by Lane and 2016-standout safety Brandon Jones, who also holds nine common offers (FSU, Arizona State, LSU, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Ole Miss, Texas A&M, and Washington State).
Joining the talented tandem are junior Tay Forest, and Lane’s brother, sophomore Corey Lane.
“It’s great to get to play with [Corey],” Lane said. “To be able to play with him on the same side, in the same defense, and same secondary is great. Also to be able to play with Brandon [Jones] and Tay [Forest], it’s just a blessing. I feel like we’ll have one of the top secondaries in the state.”
The Nacogdoches junior also offered encouraging words for young players with dreams of reaching the next level, “work hard… keep your grades up… and be patient with the process.”
Lane plans to take his time choosing the right school for both him and his family, and wants to major in business or criminal justice.
Nacogdoches Dragons 2014 Varsity Football Schedule
* District 16-5A games