Why he's trending up: The past few weeks have brought an offer from not just the Longhorns, but also Georgia, Tennessee and California. Matthews is up to 12 college offers, including other SEC programs like Texas A&M and Ole Miss. He's set to make a handful of camp stops in June, including LSU. The Tigers will be looking closely at the Baton Rouge native as a potential cornerback offer in the 2023 class.
Jordan Matthews received a scholarship offer from Tennessee almost a year ago and has been in frequent contact with the Vols in recent months. He hasn’t visited them to this point, but he’s now planning to change that this summer.
The four-star Class of 2023 cornerback from Woodlawn High School in Baton Rouge, La., told GoVols247 that he’s scheduled to take an official visit to Tennessee the weekend of June 24. It’s the only official visit he currently has planned, and he said he’s looking forward to getting a firsthand look at the Vols.
The 6-foot-1.5, 175-pound Matthews said he has been talking with Tennessee coach Josh Heupel’s staff, led by defensive backs coach Willie Martinez and running backs coach Jerry Mack, “at least three, four days a week.” Matthews said he plans to visit the Vols for multiple reasons.
“Well, they’re obviously in the SEC,” said Matthews, who’s ranked by 247Sports as the No. 243 overall prospect and No. 27 cornerback in the 2023 class and the No. 12 junior from the state of Louisiana. “I like SEC teams. They ship a lot of people off to the draft. Every year, the most people get drafted from the SEC.
“But, other than that, I think they’re an on-the-rise program, and I think they’re going to start winning in a couple of years — like, really getting-to-the-playoffs type winning program. Coach Martinez, he’s a real cool guy, and I can see him coaching me at the next level.
“I just like the program. And then who doesn’t want to play at Rocky Top?”
Matthews, who holds offers from more than 25 schools, said he also knows that Tennessee’s Neyland Stadium “is loud and big and everything — one of the biggest ones in the nation.”
“That big-time football, that’s what I like,” he said. “I like playing under all the lights.”
While he’s not ready to name any favorites, Matthews said “I know Tennessee is” one of the schools standing out to him at the moment. The lone prediction on the 247Sports Crystal Ball points to Texas, which has hosted him on at least four visits, as the favorite to land him.
He said he likes what he has heard from Martinez, Mack and others about his opportunity in Tennessee’s secondary.
“I know the DB coach, he’s a really developmental guy,” Matthews said, referring to Martinez. “And he says he’ll switch me around positions, make me learn those other positions so I can be able to be versatile for the next level. …
“They said I have a real good chance to compete for a spot and everything, and to bring a winning program and build a winning team. They feel like I can be a part of that, and I can really contribute to it.”
It also doesn’t hurt that Matthews knows four-star Tennessee running back signee Dylan Sampson of Dutchtown High School in Geismar, La. Matthews, who posted a personal record of 10.66 seconds in the 100 meters earlier this month, said he and Sampson are “real good friends” who frequently go head-to-head at track meets.
“My friend, Dylan Sampson, he’s from Dutchtown,” Matthews said. “We compete in track together. We just competed in the district meet last week, and our regional meet (was Thursday). We’re going to compete in that one, and then the state meet. We’re, like, neck-and-neck. …
“When I see him, I like to ask him some stuff (about Tennessee). Every time he says, ‘Jordan, when you coming? When you coming? When you coming?’ I’m like, ‘I’m going to come.’ He’s like, a lot of guys have been looking to go to Tennessee, just because they’re on the rise and everything, and they see something in them and stuff like that.”
Matthews said he and Sampson “only see each other at meets.” But he added that it’s “a really big deal” that he already knows someone who will soon be playing for the Vols.
“I like to ask people, or guys that actually signed to the schools, just to get the inside of things and how they really recruit and coach,” Matthews said.
He admitted that he grew up liking hometown school LSU, and his father, Roshaun Matthews, played for the Tigers. But the younger Matthews said he’s open to the idea of attending an out-of-state school.
“That was my hometown (school) and everything,” he said of LSU. “But as I got older, I feel like there’s more than Louisiana out there, so I just want to explore. … (My parents are) the main ones that said, ‘Whatever’s best for you, it’ll be good.’”
Despite the trip to Tennessee being the only official visit he currently has scheduled, Matthews said he “probably will” add more official visits to his schedule for June. He said he currently hopes to announce his college decision before the start of his senior season.
“I do want to probably do it in July,” he said. “I probably will (take more official visits in June), because I want to take advantage of all five of them — even if they’re not all during the summer.
“I might take one or two during the season. I do want to take all five, though.”
hey that's my neck of the woods. woodlawn, wow. they've been bad at football for a while but kinda surprised people in the 2020 shortened covid year. matthews was first team all-district this past year.