Norwin junior Pons makes Miami (Ohio) his football choice

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Sunday, April 23, 2023 | 4:43 PM


Norwin’s Jackson Pons will continue his football career at Ben Roethlisberger’s alma mater. Only he will be playing on the defensive side of the ball.

Pons announced Sunday his commitment to Miami (Ohio) of the Mid-American Conference, where he will line up at safety.

The stress of the recruiting game can take a toll on high school prospects. Pons had 17 Division I offers or opportunities and has been mulling them over for months.

He chose Miami over Toledo and Ohio University. The 6-foot-2, 185-pounder said Duke came into the picture late but did not offer a scholarship.

A junior with another season of high school football to play, Pons is a standout wide receiver and defensive back for the Knights.

“It was a lot of fun, and I am so grateful for it, but I am happy to just be able to focus on getting ready with my Norwin team and ball out this fall,” Pons said. “I am going to keep working hard to get ready (for the season).”

Last season, he had 22 receptions for 348 yards and four touchdowns and played quarterback later in the season.

He had 38 tackles and three interceptions on defense.

While he could have waited until the summer or sometime during his senior year to make a decision, Pons felt now was the right time to act.

“I committed now because I felt like Miami met everything I was looking for, and they have a great recruiting class already started for 2024,” he said. “Plus, I want to focus on getting ready for my senior year.”

Miami, Pons said, checked all of the boxes for him.

“I was looking at all the schools with my family to see which was the best fit for me for football, academics and a true college campus,” he said. “Miami has a winning tradition and has put players into the NFL, which is a dream of mine. The coaches were just so excited about what I could bring to their defense that I really felt like there was a good plan for me there to play there early.”

Bill Beckner Jr. is a TribLive reporter covering local sports in Westmoreland County. He can be reached at bbeckner@triblive.com.

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