Recruiting has picked up recently for 6-foot-1, 205-pound safety Jonathan Mason. So much so, that the Mitchellville (Md.) DeMatha prospect took his first official this weekend.
"I took an official up to Connecticut," he said. "I really liked it. My parents and I were very impressed with the academics, they had academic advisors talk to us from the school of business. I really enjoyed the facilities at Connecticut, they were amazing, state of the art. I also found out they are going to a paperless weight room, all computers by the time I'd get there."
Mason arrived at Connecticut on Friday.
"I got there kind of late and on the first day I met my host, Anthony Davis from Good Counsel," he said. "I also talked to Coach Ambrose and spoke with Coach Edsall for a little while.
"On Saturday, I checked out the practice, toured the facilities and the stadium and after that I had a very nice dinner. I also went to a position meeting too."
What did the Maryland prospect think about the practice?
"I came at the end of it and I liked how Coach Edsall was," he said. "He stood in the middle of the field the whole time and barely said anything. He wasn't screaming, it was more like a business.
"The practice overall was similar to what we do at DeMatha. That would give me a leg up, because it's just more technical base stuff."
Mason also enjoyed his time with his host.
"It was nice hanging out with Anthony," he said. "Most of the time I watched the Pittsburgh/West Virginia game. They were co-Big East champs because of it. I just chilled in the dorms and met with some other players. I talked to Mike Cox about the Ivy League. He told me he had offers from those too, but decided to go to UConn because it was I-A. That was interesting."
To round out the visit, the defensive back met with Randy Edsall.
"It was nice talking to him," he said. "He didn't pressure me to commit. He was frank about how he wants me there and how all the coaches like me and it's the right place for me. I talked about my concern of academics, and he told me that they are a great academics school and very family oriented."
Where does the visit put Connecticut for Mason?
"They are definitely near the top of my list," he said. "I don't really know who else is up there. A lot of schools are contacting me and starting to see my tape. I've got interest from Vanderbilt, Stanford and North Carolina.
"I'm also looking at taking a visit to Harvard this weekend. Then I hold offers from Connecticut, Ohio, William & Mary, Richmond, Eastern Michigan and Army."
Mason led his team and tackles and was tied for the lead in interceptions with four this year.