Jamaal Williams became intimately aware with what BYU was during a junior day visit earlier last month. He came away with some very strong impressions of the program which culminated into him committing to sign with BYU earlier Wednesday evening.
"It just feels right and it always has, but today, I don't know, I just woke up and decided that today was the day I needed to commit," said the 6-foot-2 running back. "I went out and compared them to different schools, and no one could compare to everything BYU had to offer."
Williams had offers from Boise State, Utah, Idaho, New Mexico State and San Diego State — with increasing interest from other schools.
He recently visited Boise State and San Diego State on unofficial visits.
"Nothing that those schools matched up to what BYU had to offer," said the Summit High School prospect. "Their facilities didn't match up, and it didn't feel right being there like it did while I was at BYU."
Williams is not LDS, but he said he feels right at home in BYU's unique atmosphere.
"It's a place where I can go and be surrounded by people that live right, like I do," said the Fontana, Calif. native. "It's a place where I can focus on what is most important in life. I love the coaches, the people there. I love everything, and I just haven't had that feeling about any other school that has been recruiting me."
Williams is keenly aware of the fact that BYU graduates two of its top running backs following the coming 2011-2012 season. With both JJ Di Luigi and Bryan Kariya leaving, spots need to be filled.
"That's the plan," he said. "The plan is to get there, and hopefully contribute right away. I met Juice (Joshua Quezada) while on my trip, and coaches mentioned that they're looking for someone to rotate with him after this year. Hopefully I can prove to be that guy."
Williams shared time in Summit's backfield last season with Oregon signee Devon Blackmon, but still managed 11 touchdowns and 717 yards on just 93 carries.
"I feel that I can bring some good speed and athleticism to the running back position at BYU," he said. "I'm very excited to have this opportunity. I feel like I found a diamond in the rough with BYU, I really do. They're a great program that is going to do some great things coming up with independence and all that. I'm very excited to be a part of all that."