Advertisement

Maryland WR Jeshaun Jones, a South Fort Myers High grad, to play in Saturday's Hula Bowl

Former University of Maryland football standout Jeshaun Jones, a South Fort Myers High School alum, will be among the college football players competing in Saturday’s Hula Bowl All-Star Football game in Orlando.

Jones, a wide receiver, wrapped up his Terrapins’ career in December, catching three passes for 43 yards in Maryland’s 31-13 victory over Auburn in the Music City Bowl in Nashville, Tenn. As a graduate student in 2023, Jones led all Terps receivers in receptions (56) and yards (790) while also catching four touchdown passes.

A 2018 graduate of South Fort Myers High, Jones spent six years at Maryland after knee injuries cost him nearly two full seasons. Despite the physical setbacks, he finished his career as one of the best wide receivers in the program’s history.

Here are some additional things to know about Jones and the Hula Bowl.

What were some of Jeshaun Jones’ best moments at Maryland?

Jones burst on the scene as a true freshman in 2018, recording a passing, rushing, and receiving touchdown on his first three touches in an upset win over Texas. Jones became the first FBS player to accomplish this feat since Marcus Mariota did it for Oregon in 2014 and was named the CBS Sports National Freshman of the Week. He ended his freshman year with seven touchdowns and his five receiving scores were the most for a Maryland freshman since Stefon Diggs.

From 2018: South Fort Myers' Jeshaun Jones on his historic debut with Maryland

A torn ACL cost Jones the entire 2019 season and another season-ending injury knocked him out of the second half of the 2021 season. As a redshirt senior in 2022, Jones set career marks with nine catches for 152 yards and a touchdown in Senior Day against Rutgers. His touchdown reception allowed Maryland quarterback Taulia Tagovailoa to break the program’s all-time passing TD mark.

Last season, Jones became only the 16th Terp to surpass 100 career receptions. He also became only the eighth Maryland player to have 100-yard receiving games in three different seasons when he caught six passes for 121 yards in a win over Indiana. Jones also reached the 2,000-yard mark for his career when he had 70 receiving yards at Rutgers. With a victory in the Music City Bowl, Jones helped Maryland become one of just four Power 5 schools to win bowl games in each of the past three seasons.

What awards did Jeshaun Jones win at Maryland?

Jones, who earned a Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice, earned All-Big Ten Academic honors three times. He was also a Big Ten Distinguished Scholar award recipient in 2021-22 for maintaining a 4.0 grade point average. Jones was named to the preseason watch list for the Paul Hornung Award, given to the most versatile player in major college football, in both 2021 and 2023.

How does Jeshaun Jones rank among Maryland’s wide receivers?

The 6-foot-1, 188-pound Jones finished his Maryland career fifth in program history in both receptions (149) and receiving touchdowns (14) and sixth in receiving yards (2,403). Those totals place Jones among other Terps receiving luminaries such as current NFL players Stefon Diggs (Buffalo Bills), D.J. Moore (Chicago Bears) and former NFL standouts Jermaine Lewis, Torrey Smith and Darrius Heyward-Bey.

What is the Hula Bowl?

Nov 25, 2023; Piscataway, New Jersey, USA; Maryland Terrapins wide receiver Jeshaun Jones (6) gains yards after a catch as Rutgers Scarlet Knights defensive lineman Rene Konga (90) pursues during the first half at SHI Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports
Nov 25, 2023; Piscataway, New Jersey, USA; Maryland Terrapins wide receiver Jeshaun Jones (6) gains yards after a catch as Rutgers Scarlet Knights defensive lineman Rene Konga (90) pursues during the first half at SHI Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

Established in 1946, the Hula Bowl All-Star Football Classic began as a matchup between college football players and a local Hawaiian Islands team. For a brief period, NFL players joined the Hawaiian team to create a more competitive game.

In 1960, the Hula Bowl transitioned to an All-Star game that featured only NCAA college players in an East vs. West format. The game remained in Hawaii until moving to Orlando in 2022.

The teams will be comprised of NCAA college players from all divisions, along with international players from Japan. The game will also include Polynesian players with ties to Hawaii.

Who gets invited to the Hula Bowl?

Each year, 100 of the top college players are invited by the Hula Bowl Selection Committee, which is made up of former college and professional football players and coaches. Players must be college seniors or recent graduates. Invitations are based on a player’s potential to make a professional team’s roster. Scouts from the NFL, UFL, and CFL will attend the game.

Notable players who participated in past Hula Bowls include NFL Hall of Famers Reggie White, Dan Marino, Eric Dickerson, Marcus Allen, Tony Dorsett, and Deion Sanders.

How can I watch the Hula Bowl?

This year’s 78th annual edition of the Hula Bowl will be played at the University of Central Florida’s FBC Mortgage Stadium. Kickoff is at noon. The game will be televised nationally on CBS Sports Network.

This article originally appeared on Fort Myers News-Press: 2024 Hula Bowl: Maryland's Jeshaun Jones to play in all-star game