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From a Blue Devil to a Duke: Varina's Jailin Walker commits to JMU

Posted at 2:35 PM, Aug 31, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-31 14:35:35-04

HENRICO COUNTY, Va. -- As Jailin Walker went through his 17 college offers, the two things he was looking for was to compete on the field and academically in the classroom.

In the end, Walker was very impressed with what JMU could do for him as a student-athlete and verbally committed to James Madison last Saturday at Varina's football field.

"What ultimately led to my decision was the [JMU] coaches, said Walker. "They're like the Varina coaches here. Varina coaches are not just coaches but they're like father figures to me."

Walker's father was shot and killed last August, just prior to the Blue Devils' fall practice.

He chose JMU over ODU and had interest from Liberty, Temple and William & Mary. And did so without a taking an official visit to the Harrisonburg campus due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

"I actually had a virtual tour," Walker stated. "The great facilities. They had great gyms and have great fields."

The process wasn't easy for Walker and at times weighted on him.

"It's a lot of weight off my shoulders," Walker expressed. "I had to think every night where I'm a go, where I'm a go. Now I finally got the great choice and I'm very proud of my decision."

Walker played both running back and linebacker last season for Varina but most likely to play defense at JMU.

As far the upcoming Spring season, expect number #21 to be on the field with his Blue Devil teammates.

"I'm definitely playing in the Spring," Walker explained. "As a junior, like with the sophomores, I helped the seniors out. Now as a senior, so now I got to help out the sophomores and the juniors. I'm going to put on that Varina helmet one more time."