Jones, who is one of many future Division I signees that will don a McEachern uniform this fall, committed to Louisville earlier this summer. At 6-foot-4 and 310 pounds, he was graded at 80 percent and 31 pancake blocks in 2013 in leading the Indians to the Class AAAAAA state semifinals.
“I think it’s a great opportunity for him. He has had some really nice offers,” McEachern coach Kyle Hockman said. “He really liked (Louisville). The defensive coordinator who was at Georgia (Todd Grantham) recruited him and did a nice job. (Jones) is a big strong kid.”
Howell recently committed to Georgia Tech following two recruiting visits in a four-day span. He had 24 catches for 443 yards and seven touchdowns for the Wildcats, who finished with a 3-7 record last fall.
“I am blessed to have officially commit to Georgia Tech,” Howell said via Twitter.
Jones, who strength is opening up lanes for the running game, was recruited by Grantham, the former Georgia defensive coordinator, and chose Louisville over Syracuse, Cincinnati, East Carolina, Georgia State and Marshall. He will join his McEachern teammate Henry Famurewa, who graduated in the spring after leading Cobb County with 16 sacks in 2013.
This season, Jones is returning to anchor an offensive front alongside fellow senior Chuma Edoga.
“Chuma at 6-4, 280 is athletic for that size and has great feet, Chandler has decent feet but is really powerful,” Hockman said. “He’s strong, kind of nasty and is more of a mauler and a masher. Chandler, he loves the down block and the drive block where he can get his hands on you and knock you off the ball.”
Where Jones has the power, Howell has the speed. Having run a 4.45 in the 40-yard dash, Howell can stretch the field and burn opposing defensive backs with long touchdown plays.
Howell scored three touchdowns last year in Wheeler’s 53-49 loss to Woodstock with two of them coming from 62 and 35 yards out. He had a 55-yard touchdown in Wheeler’s season-opening 44-14 win over Sprayberry and had 82 yards on three grabs, all coming in the first half.
He tacked on 97 more receiving yards in Wheeler’s 59-20 win over Pope two weeks later and scored on a 67-yard touchdown on the Wildcats’ opening drive.
“He’s definitely a field stretcher,” Wheeler coach Mike Collins said. “We used him to blow the top off of things. And the type of offense that Georgia Tech runs, he’ll likely get single coverage and will take advantage.”