Ever since head coach Derek Mason has taken over the reins at Vanderbilt, one thing has been in common when it comes to recruiting defensive backs; size, size, and more size.
Coach Mason prefers taller corners and safeties who are not afraid to attack the ball downhill. That’s why Jeremiah McDonald, a safety from Northshore High School in Slidell, Louisiana, seems to be a prime target for Mason and the Dores coaching staff. McDonald, who stands at 6’3” and 187 pounds, fits the mold of what the Vanderbilt coaching staff is looking for in defensive backs. I caught up with Jeremiah this past week and he had some good things to say about Vanderbilt and its staff.
Jeremiah currently holds five offers from schools like Ole Miss, Northwestern, Vandy, etc, and along with those offers, Notre Dame has been showing heavy interest and McDonald thinks an offer could come at any time. Northshore, Jeremiah’s high school, went 4-6 and missed the playoffs by a hair, but McDonald had a very productive season individually going for 51 tackles, 6 interceptions, 10 PBU’s, 1 fumble recovery, and 2 blocked punts. A very lengthy stat line, from the big, ball-hawking safety. When I asked Jeremiah what he improved upon the most from his sophomore to junior season, he responded, "I definitely became more confident in my game, I improved on my zone defense tremendously and flying to the ball. I also improved on communicating with the rest of my defense, and becoming more of a leader.”
When we started talking about Vanderbilt, McDonald was very excited and eager to talk about them. He said they are currently showing him the most interest out of anyone, and that he has mostly been talking to Coach Marve. Jeremiah said that Marve told him “I could fit well in the 3-4 defense they run, and with my size and speed could play anywhere on the field except nose tackle, joking of course.” McDonald plans to visit Vandy in March and take a trip to Ole Miss also in the near future. Vanderbilt definitely looks to be in good shape and is one of McDonald’s leaders because they were the first to notice him and give him a chance. “I definitely like their academic standards and that they play in a competitive conference.” McDonald said of Vanderbilt. Jeremiah plans to announce sometime in the summer when he finishes all his camps and all that. Vanderbilt looks to be in the driver’s seat here, and as long as everything goes as planned then they should have themselves a big, playmaking safety in the back of their defense.