— Gerry Hamilton (@HamiltonESPN) February 7, 2018
GAINESVILLE — When one of the country’s best wide receivers decided he wanted to bring his talents to Florida, his mom decided she wasn’t having it and made like a rolling stone.
Jacob Copeland, a four-star wide receiver from Pensacola, had been given the choice of Alabama, Florida and Tennessee on National Signing Day, but his mom was rooting for Tennessee or Alabama, even wearing a hat and a sweatshirt from both spots.
When Copeland, ranked twelfth in the nation, picked Florida, his mom gave him the side eye and stormed off.
“I don’t know why she walked away,” Copeland said on ESPN. “I can’t go with my mom, I gotta go with my heart.”
Before the big day, Copeland had stated, ““I enjoyed my recruiting process to the full extent, but it’s time for it to come to an end. National Signing Day is a big moment for me. I took time with my decision, and now I’m ready for it.”
Social media didn’t stay quiet for long after mom exited. ESPN anchor, Dari Nowkhah, tweeted, “I remember hosting Landon Collins‘ announcement. His mom made a scene and took Landon’s moment from him. I’ll never forget it. Watching Copeland’s mom reminds me of it. Sad, shameful, disgusting. Hope she’s happy.”
And FIU Panthers player, Tymell Murphy, noted that “This is the Saddest thing i ever seen a parent do to a kid who just realized his dream of going to college smh RT @BarrettSallee: Jacob Copeland commits to Florida. Jacob Copeland’s mom, wearing an Alabama shirt and Tennessee hat, gets up and leaves.”
After a while though, mom had second thoughts and returned to the arena to give her son a hug.
Copeland tweeted before making his choice, “Throughout this entire recruiting process I never been as stressed as I am now. I cried and cried all last night about God leading me in the right directions. Now I don’t have over much as a day to decide on a school that’ll change my future after football.”
As to why he chose Florida, Copeland said, “Florida has always been a top school for me and Coach [Dan] Mullen going there just made it official. He and Coach [Billy] Gonzales have been recruiting me since they were at Mississippi State and we just kept it going at Florida. They got a new coaching staff and I like what they’re doing. They have a good background.”
In the end, Copeland took his mom’s antics in stride, finally tweeting, “What my mama did today was hilarious 😂 if you knew her personally that’s her job. PUT ON A SHOW!”
Can’t wait to see what she has in store for game day.