Georgia Tech A-back Roddy Jones sat down with me for a few minutes on Tuesday to talk about last season, this summer, and what’s coming up for the Jackets.
AJC: Are you taking any classes right now?
Jones: Yep, I’m taking three classes right now: Math, Spanish and Management Science.
AJC: Which one is your favorite?
Jones: I’m probably the best at math, but Spanish is my favorite. It’s just a fun class. The teacher’s real light and it’s a small class. So, it’s pretty fun.
AJC: How do you say “We’re going to beat Georgia” in Spanish?
Jones: [In English] We’re going to beat Georgia. I don’t know what ‘beat’ is, but I can say ‘we’re’ and ‘Georgia.’
AJC: What are you going to do with the rest of your summer?
Jones: Take classes. Try and go home every couple of weekends. I want to spend as much time with my brother before he leaves for the Air Force Academy.
AJC: You’re not the kind of son who brings home five or six duffel bags of clothes are you?
Jones: I usually keep it to 1 or 2. I usually come home with a little laundry and an empty stomach. I usually give my mom about 10 minutes notice.
AJC: What’s your favorite meal that she cooks?
Jones: It changes a lot but right now I’m in a baked ziti phase. She makes excellent baked ziti. You can ask anybody who has had some.
AJC: You cook at all?
Jones: I try. I cook a little bit. I usually grill more than anything else.
AJC: What’s your specialty?
Jones: I can do it all. Hamburgers, hot dogs, chicken, ribs, steak. Most of the time it’s ribs and chicken.
AJC: What are you working on football-wise this summer?
Jones: Really want to improve my hands, so that’s something I’m working on.
AJC: How do you do that?
Jones: Just catching balls. Every time you catch you got to really focus on the little things in catching. When you are out on the field you don’t have time to focus on that stuff. It’s got to become second nature. Little things like looking at the point of the ball.
Other than that it’s pretty much getting bigger, faster, stronger, like every summer.
AJC: What was your personal best moment last season?
Jones: Scoring the touchdown against Georgia. The run down the sidelines. Jus because of the situation that it was in. And because of who it was against. Play that maybe comes once in a lifetime.
It was just a great moment.
AJC: Up in the press box, where I was, we thought Reshad Jones had the angle and that he was going to push you out of bounds.
Jones: If you go back and look at the tape I think one of our guys, Nick Claytor, tries to cut him and maybe gets a hand on him a little bit. That little push threw him off balance enough to make it happen.
That’s what coach says, you never really know what will happen until you get after a guy.
AJC: From where we were, we couldn’t tell where the line was and where he was. It looked really tight.
Jones: It was, it was. Honestly I thought I had stepped out of bounds, just because I was so close. You never really know once you get that close. I always remember my old coach saying finish the play until they blow the whistle. That was my coach in middle school. Now it paid dividends because I finished the play and it turns out there was no call.
AJC: The team’s best moment?
Jones: Beating Georgia. To break the streak was just great. To be in the lockeroom after the game. To see the joy and relief on the senior’s faces was just great. It was their last chance. It’s something that every class that comes in here wants to do for their senior season is beat Georgia.
AJC: Tough schedule; Jackonsville State followed by back-to-back Thursdays against Clemson and Miami. What’s going to be the key to a good start for yall?
Jones: Really camp is going to be the key. Making sure we lay a great foundation during camp. But really just taking it one game at a time. We’ve got to treat Jackonsville State like Clemson, just like we are going to treat Miami, just like we are going to treat Georgia at the end of the year. So you’ve just got to treat it one game at a time. Especially because we don’t have a bye week in their until the end of the season. It’s going to be a week-to-week thing and just focus on that team and just go 1-0 every week.
AJC: Who should Tech fans expect to get a surprise from this season?
Jones: I don’t know if it’s much of a surprise from these two guys after seeing them in the spring but Anthony Allen and Marcus Wright are really going to be real good players for us this year.
As far as new guys that you’ll see a surprise from, on the defensive side of the ball I think Robert Hall is going to have a great year. He looked great in the spring and was darn near impossible for us to block. Those guys are really poised to have a great year. They’ve always been great players but they’re going to get a really good chance to shine this year.
AJC: Anything you want to say to Tech fans reading the blog?
Jones: Thanks for your support all the time. To hell with Georgia and ‘Hi Mom.’