St. Joe's Prep quarterback takes inspiration from Eagles QB Jalen Hurts

The quarterback for St. Joe's Prep says the Eagles starter has plenty of qualities a young player can look up to.

Jillian Mele Image
Tuesday, February 7, 2023
St. Joe's Prep quarterback takes inspiration from Jalen Hurts
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The quarterback for St. Joe's Prep says the Eagles starter has plenty of qualities a young player can look up to.

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- This Sunday all eyes will also be on Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts.

But in just a few years it could be a high school student that is following his footsteps onto the national stage.

His name is Samaj Jones, and many people say they have similarities in more ways than one.

"Yes, like every day that I'm around people, someone tells me I look like Jalen Hurts," said Jones.

While that is pretty cool, the comparisons go even further.

"I think the first thing is this is demeanor on the field. Jalen is very calm, cool, and collected. He doesn't get too high with the highs and doesn't get too low with the lows, and Samaj is very much like that" says Tim Roken, Head Football Coach for St. Joe's Prep.

"You got to motivate guys, you got to be able to make people on your team better around you, and you see that comparison between the two," Roken said. "Besides the physical attributes of being able to throw the football and run the ball, I think the biggest piece is his leadership. It's pretty comparable. It's pretty cool to see."

As a leader, Samaj helped take his team to and win the PIAA State Championship in 2022. He says he looks up to Hurts as a player and a man.

"He (Hurts) said to be the thermometer. Not the thermostat. Set the tone and don't go with it. Attack the moment," said Jones.

Now all eyes will be on Hurts Sunday as he tries to attack the moment on the largest stage of football against the Kansas City Chiefs and Patrick Mahomes. A moment in history that means so much, to so many, including Jones.

"It's a great thing in Black history because it's never been done before. It creates a blueprint for people like me and other people in the city who haven't always been given things. You see it, (and know) they can be done," said Jones.

"It's something for our guys to be able to look at and say, hey, you know what, with hard work and dedication and sacrifice, and surrounding themselves with the right people - I think it sets them up for a future, for success," said Roken.

And if Jones ever had the chance to meet Hurts?

"I would say thank you because that's actually one person that I look up to, and it's not just because of football, but things on and off the field," said Jones. "I've heard from people that have met him that say what a good person (he is). He makes people better around him. He's also a great football player."