Sometimes the overlooked players are often the hungriest for success. That appears to be the case when it comes to Jackson Tonya.
If you’re unfamiliar with Tonya, he’s a defensive line prospect who also has experience playing on the offensive line out of Central Valley in Western Pennsylvania. He’s also a winner, having been part of three WPIAL championships and two state titles during his high school playing career that concluded following his senior season in 2022. And Tonya has been in talks with West Virginia about joining the Mountaineers.
WVSN caught up with Tonya to uncover what the WVU staff has said to him, what other schools are on his radar and how he keeps himself motivated in the midst of an ongoing recruitment.
Tonya says he was contacted to stop by WVU for a PWO (preferred walk-on) visit recently. He made the short trip from Monaca, Pennsylvania to Morgantown, West Virginia. This is what Tonya had to say about his visit to the WVU campus.
— Jackson Tonya (@JacksonTonya53) January 16, 2023
“I was contacted last Thursday about coming down to see the facilities for a PWO visit. That all went well and now I plan to reach back out to them to talk about the possibility of it happening,” said Tonya.
The high school champion revealed the coach he referenced was West Virginia assistant coach Andrew Jackson. “I’ve been in contact with Coach Jackson and we’ve talked about making it work,” Tonya offered about what’s actually been said to him by WVU and where he stands in the process.
While Tonya did express excitement over the possibility of playing for a major program with such a long history like West Virginia, especially one that’s still within the region he grew up in and not too far from home, he did make it clear WVU is not the only school he’s been in communication with and he does have other options to consider.
“I’ve talked to Holy Cross, Bowling Green, Fordham and Yale. I have some PSAC offers including IUP, which has the second most winning percentage in the state of Pennsylvania behind Penn State. My recruiting experience has been slow up until two weeks ago. I’m just beyond thankful for the opportunity Coach Brown and his staff presented me with,” Tonya revealed. And judging by Ivy schools on his list, it’s about more than just football for this player.
Senior Year Highlights
6 Pass Deflections
2 Forced Fumbles
1 Interception https://t.co/plGO7auWcM
— Jackson Tonya (@JacksonTonya53) December 8, 2022
Tonya wants fans to know he’s been steadily keeping in shape by doing some boxing and would love to become a Mountaineer. Traveling down those country roads may make sense for this country music fan.