BALTOMORE, Md. – Gillman High School sports a pair of very talented tackles– Devery Hamilton and Ellison Jordan. Hamilton is of the offensive variety, while Jordan is a defensive tackle. Hamilton just committed to Michigan on Tuesday, while Jordan recently announced his top three schools.
As a four-star prospect, Jordan is the No. 17 defensive tackle in the country according to 247sports.com and has over 20 offers to his name. Jordan is working this offseason to validate his lofty ranking.
“It’s been going very well,” Jordan said of his offseason. “I’ve just been working hard with the team, working out, working on my technique in run stopping and more of an advanced rush move, even getting a better get off. It’s also like getting in better shape. I know at the start of the season I wasn’t in so bad of shape, but I could have been in better shape. I am doing better every week. We are just working to be the best team we can be and have each other’s backs so it’s all good.”
At 6’ and 255 pounds, Jordan uses every bit of his size to push lineman off the ball and make his path to the quarterback in pass rushing. When pursuing the ball carrier, Jordan sheds blocks well before crashing and clogging running lanes.
Although Jordan is committed to working at defensive tackle, his athletic ability and agility have brought up the question of his future at other positions, even on the offensive side of the ball. While this doesn’t appear to be in the cards for Jordan, it does shed light on the athletic ability of such a large prospect.
“Well a lot of people sometimes ask me, ‘do you play linebacker?’ or they will even want me as a full back because of my size,” Jordan said. “But what I have to say about that is there are a lot of great players that are big like Rashan Gary, Ed Oliver, Julia Rochester, all of them. I’m not saying being big is bad, but to me being short or undersized, I do have the intangibles. I’m not the biggest defensive tackle in the country, but I have God given talents and a lot of coaches looked over me or wanted to change my position because I was a little undersized.”
Although Jordan is receiving collegiate attention due to his skills and motor rather than strictly his measurables, the rising senior says that he has grown considerably over the past several years.
“My freshman year when I started at nose guard, I was 5’10”, 235 or 240,” Jordan said. “I’m like 6’ right now and 275, so I got a little bit bigger and I’m a little bit taller, but I’m not short. It is what it is. A lot of people look at me and say I have good quickness off the ball, a high motor and that I’m physical for my size. Despite my size, people see my highlight tape and they like what they see on tape. This offseason I just kept working on my technique and little things. With a lineman, the low man wins and being shorter than other guys helps win a few battles. Because I am shorter, I have that leverage so it kind of evens out.”
So, Jordan was worked hard to receive recognition for his football ability and put his name on the map. While collegiate recognition did not come instantly, Jordan has maintained a high profile in recruiting circles and it has only grown since a formidable defensive school from the Big Ten identified his talent.
“Well I got my first offer as a sophomore in January and that was from Michigan State,” Jordan said. “They were the first one, they were coming off a Rose Bowl and beat Ohio State, two great times that a lot of people didn’t expect Michigan State to beat. So when they were the first ones to offer me, it was like…wow. It was a dream.”
This dream as a top-flight recruit slowly became a reality as more schools continued to join Michigan State and offered Jordan a scholarship to play football.
“And then came the University of North Carolina Charlotte, which is a pretty good school,” Jordan said. “Then a couple months later, Virginia Tech, which is a great school defensively, offered. Then the next day, Maryland offered me. And the thing about Maryland was that I was supposed to be offered on a Junior Day on Saturday, but they wanted to offer me on Friday so that we could get to talk and everything. Then Georgia Tech, Marshall, Boston College, Wake Forest, West Virginia, Georgia Southern, Tennessee, and Penn State.”
Now that Jordan has experienced a good bit of time in the recruiting process, the four-star defensive tackle has figured out how to handle his announcement. Before a decision, Jordan had to narrow his list down to a top group of schools, and he has done just that.
Out of all of those schools, three stand out to Jordan right now: Penn State, Maryland and Virginia Tech. Jordan has considerable ties to all three programs, and he has built relationships with the coaches through the process.