USC Football: Jack Jones suspended for 2018 season opener, Spring Camp

Alicia de Artola/Reign of Troy
Alicia de Artola/Reign of Troy /

Cornerback Jack Jones will sit out USC Football Spring Camp while focusing on academics and has been suspended for the 2018 season opener.

USC Football’s first day back on Howard Jones Field came and went without Jack Jones making an appearance. After practice on Tuesday, his absence was explained by head coach Clay Helton, who confirmed the cornerback will sit out this spring.

Jones will take the spring off from football to focus on academics, Helton said. He has also been suspended for USC’s season opener in 2018 against UNLV for a “team violation.”

Helton didn’t elaborate what that team violation might have been.

Regardless of the reason, USC will be without one of two starting cornerbacks for all of camp and will need to prepare for the start of the season without him.

Jones had a rollercoaster of a season in 2017. An AP third team All-American and AP All-Pac-12 second teamer, he had a stretch to start the season which earned him Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Week honors against Cal. However, the campaign wasn’t all roses as he was hit with multiple unsportsmanlike conduct fouls and gave up several big play touchdowns.

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As it was his first year as a regular starter, Jones should have been set to enter Spring Camp as a junior with an eye on leveling out his play, pairing his exceptional athleticism with better, more consistent decision-making.

However, the suspension will now delay his ability to progress on the field while opening up some major opportunities for the likes of Isaiah Langley, Jonathan Lockett and Greg Johnson, who could compete for the third spot in the rotation—and perhaps push Jones for his starting job.

Langley stood in for Iman Marshall while he was injured last year while Lockett was a regular contributor for the Trojans in 2016 before a hip injury took him out of the lineup for over a year. Meanwhile, Johnson was a four-star cornerback with plenty of potential for early playing time in 2017 before a shoulder injury forced his medical redshirt year.

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On top of that trio, USC will welcome a pair of highly-touted corners from this year’s recruiting class, Olaijah Griffin and Isaac Taylor-Stuart, who could also make a play for Jones’ job.