Report: Former Irish QB Jones chooses Cincinnati

Updated: September 27, 2007, 5:30 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

The Demetrius Jones saga has led to Cincinnati, where on Thursday the former Notre Dame quarterback told football coach Brian Kelly he wants to enroll at the university and play for the Bearcats, the Cincinnati Enquirer reported.

"My whole point of going to Notre Dame was the same reason I committed here," Jones said, according to the newspaper. "The atmosphere on campus, they've got top-notch facilities. They've got a head coach who's been coaching for 16 years, and the offense. I can put some of my best qualities on display. I just think it was a perfect fit."

Jones was Notre Dame's starting quarterback in the Fighting Irish's season opener against Georgia Tech, but was benched during the game and lost the starting job to Jimmy Clausen for the second-week game against Penn State. A week later, he missed the team bus for the trip to Michigan and left the team, intending to enroll at Northern Illinois.

At first, Notre Dame refused to release Jones from his scholarship. But the university then reversed course, offering to help Jones find an acceptable school.

That school is apparently Cincinnati of the Big East, as Jones walked into Kelly's office Thursday and told him he wanted to play for the Bearcats, the Enquirer reported. According to the report, Kelly had a prior relationship with Jones, dating back to when he recruited him to attend Central Michigan.

Kelly told the Enquirer he was notified by Notre Dame two days ago that he had been granted permission to talk to Jones.

"A whole bunch of things took place that weren't planned," Jones said, according to the newspaper. "That's the way it goes."

Jones was a Parade All-American at Morgan Park High School of Chicago and was rated No. 33 on USA Today's list of the top 100 prep players in the country.

Of Jones, Kelly told the Enquirer "He's athletic. He can run it and he can throw it. In this day and age, we see that position requires more than a guy who can just drop back [and throw]. He has to be able to do things with his feet."

Jones will have to pay his own way at the university for the fall quarter because the program currently has no scholarships to offer according to the report.

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