Iowa's 1954 "Gridiron Grapevine" press guide touted Jones as "easily the most colorful lineman to enter Big Ten play in the last half century," crediting his "tremendous speed and football 'savvy'" for his effectiveness both on offense and defense.
Writing nearly 20 years later, longtime UI sports information director Eric Wilson noted that "modern platoon football would have spoiled the game for Cal. He had to be in on all the action."
Though Jones broke his wrist before Iowa's opening game with Michigan State in 1954, he insisted on playing all season anyway. In 1955, the year the Hawkeyes faltered to a 3-5-1 record, Jones won the John B. Outland Trophy for being outstanding lineman of the year. According to Wilson, "He made his reputation on his own, without the advantage of playing on a championship team." It was the third year in a row Cal Jones received all-America recognition.
Coach Evashevski paid Jones the ultimate tribute at the end of the 1955 season when he announced that No. 62 would be retired from future use at Iowa. In all of Iowa's football history, only two players have been so honored. The other was No. 24, Nile Kinnick.
The next day The Saturday Evening Post carried a feature-length article called “That Sassy Young Coach from Iowa.”
“Forest Evashevski…refuses to be inhibited by the traditional hazards of his trade,” wrote Tom Siler. “ He either ignores the taboos or meets them head on. Whereas most college coaches nowadays weigh their public utterances as cautiously as do striped-pants diplomats, Evashevski just comes out and says what he thinks….”
The article reported that “Evy stands ready to eliminate spring football entirely, if and when his rivals agree. He sees no necessity for providing tutors for players—‘If they can’t pass, they have no business in college’—and he frowns on the common practice of segregating the gridders. ‘The student and the athlete should be synonymous on the campus,’ he says.”