Like many others, El Dorado junior defensive tackle Bijhon Jackson is interested to see what happens at the end of the season with the head coaching position at the University of Arkansas.
Unlike many others, Jackson is a 6-2, 312-pound defensive standout that just got invited to the U.S. Army All-American Combine - who could help that new coach have success.
"It's no secret that I want to be a Razorback," Jackson said. "I've grown up a fan of Arkansas and it has always been a dream to play for the Razorbacks. It's great to have some choices, but I am just waiting to see what works out up there and who will be the new coach."
Jackson got his offers from Arkansas and Arkansas State last summer and got one from Ole Miss earlier this month.
"It's always great to get an offer from any SEC school because it is the best conference in the country," Jackson said. "But I hope things work out for me with Arkansas because that is my first choice of where to play."
He got his invitation Wednesday to January's U.S. Army All-American combine, which invites the top 500 juniors and is held in San Antonio.
"It is very exciting and makes me want to work even harder," Jackson said. "I'm definitely going to go."
Just like the Razorbacks, El Dorado struggled out of the gate as both had losses in each of their first two games of the regular season.
El Dorado – which has won three straight state championships - has ripped off four straight wins since the season-opening losses at Camden Fairview (49-21) and at Fort Smith Southside (48-21).
"I don't think we came out and gave our best effort as we had been doing in the previous seasons," Jackson said. "Maybe we were kind of thinking we could just show up and win, but that's not how it works."
The Wildcats righted the ship with a win over Little Rock Central (21-0) and have since added routs over Little Rock Fair (44-6), Sheridan (47-13) and Texarkana (41-7).
"It was if a light bulb just came on in that third week of the season," Jackson said. "We started clicking on offense and defense, started focusing better and playing hard on every down. Those losses kind of woke us up very quickly that it was a whole new year and nothing we had done in the past matter this season."
El Dorado's defense, which had three shutouts last season and allowed just an average of 15 points, is only allowing six points per game in the last four contests.
"We have a whole new secondary that has gotten used to playing and we have really turned it up after that," Jackson said. "I think we are going to be able to make another run at another title."
Jackson thinks it is very simple why the Wildcats have had some much success over the years.
"I think the biggest thing is that we just have a great coaching staff and we just have a lot of pride and a lot of talent," Jackson said.
Individually, Jackson does not feel that he is playing at the same level he did as a sophomore when he had 47 tackles, eight stops for lost yardage, two sacks and a pair of forced fumbles.
He did that while starting all 14 games for a squad that went 13-1 and won its third straight Class 6A state title.
"I think I am just playing alright so far," Jackson said. "I haven't played my best and certainly haven't been living up the hype. But I am working hard and I am getting better each game and I feel like I am going to be able to play like I am supposed to play down the stretch."
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