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Getting First D-I Offer From Pitt Was Special to Georgia Sophomore Jaron Willis



The “first” anything is important and memorable in life and that’s certainly how Jaron Willis feels towards Pitt.

Willis (6’2″, 210) is a sophomore safety from Lee County High School in Leesburg, Georgia and feels honored that Pitt was the first program to extend him a scholarship offer back on January 29. Since then, Willis has received an offer from Oklahoma State.

The fact that he’s only a sophomore means that Willis is in no rush to decide on a school or to even start making visits but the Georgia native wants to start getting serious about the recruiting process. To that end, Willis tells Pittsburgh Sports Now that he plans to travel to Pittsburgh for an unofficial visit sometime in March, possibly as early as March 13.

This afternoon, PSN spoke with Willis about this upcoming visit and the relationship he’s developing with the coach that offered him, Archie Collins.

“Coach and I have been talking and since the start, we really just seem to have a lot of interest in each other,” said Willis. “When he told me that they were offering me, I felt beyond blessed. For them to be my first offer and to be offered by a program that plays in the type of conference that they play in was great. I was more than shocked but it was a blessing because when I was a freshman, I always dreamed about this day and didn’t know that it would some so fast.”

”Last year was the first year I started and the way I played, I thought I was OK but that it was just a foundation. I didn’t think a lot of offers would come in this year but next year I would have the opportunity to get some. When Pitt offered, I was like ‘Wow’. Coach told me that they love my athleticism, the way I fly to the ball, the way I get after it and that I could be someone that’s all over the field, on offense or defense.”

Since receiving the big news from Pitt, Willis has stayed in touch with Collins and is looking forward to developing their relationship and making his first visit ever to Pittsburgh later this month.

“Coach just has a cool vibe about him and just seems to me like an uncle that keeps you straight and tells you they love you,” said Willis, “That’s just the feeling I get from him. Coach seems like someone that’s worried about me as a person not just as a football player. He wants to see me become a great teammate, a great son and hopefully one day a great father.”

“I have a lot that I want to find out about Pitt like the history with the program, find out more about the whole coaching staff and I can’t wait to see the weight room facility. I saw pictures of it one day and was like ‘wow’. The weight room is where I’ll be living anyways (laughing).”

Willis is a long ways away from making a decision but Pitt, by being the first to offer, is a school he’ll always keep in mind.

“I’m really like Pitt a lot right now. Coach Collins is showing me a lot of love. They’re making a big impact on me already and I haven’t even visited yet. When it comes time to make my decision, I know that I won’t forget about Pitt.”

Sandy Schall, Coldwell Banker
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