It was an interesting junior year for Jaren Jackson in high school. His coach got fired midseason, there was controversy at the school, and that seemed to impact the team, specifically Jackson. Jackson had an up and down season, but now running with Spiece Indy Heat in the EYBL, he has taken his game to a new level, and continues to improve.
“The spring is going great,” said Jackson. “We are playing well. I know I have to keep playing aggressive and help us get to Peach Jam.”
He continued, “I think I am just playing how I always know I could play. Being out here playing against the best in the country, you have no choice but to bring your best. Everybody wants to be out here and be recruited, so we are all playing for scholarships.”
On the recruiting trail Jackson has a whole host of schools after him. Maryland, Georgetown, Indiana, Notre Dame, Butler, Illinois, Purdue, Xavier, Alabama, Pittsburgh, Michigan State, Stanford, and many others are after Jackson.
This past week Maryland, Michigan State, and Stanford made in to speak to with Jackson, and the four-star prospect detailed those trips.
About Maryland, Jackson said, “It is a great school. I have a great relationship with the coaching staff and they had a great run in the tournament even though they probably didn’t get as far as they wanted. I felt they played hard, they have a great point guard, and they have players who are versatile and can do a lot of different things.”
He went on, “I liked how they used Jake Layman which his ability to drive the basketball, and they tell me I can be kind of like that if I go there.”
When it comes to Michigan State, Jackson said, “They are just telling me that they play winning basketball. They always seem to make a deep run in the NCAA Tournament, and they play with toughness and strength which I know is something I have to develop when I’m in college.”
Stanford recently got a bit of a bump with the hire of assistant coach Adam Cohen who had been recruiting Jackson to Vanderbilt.
“It was an easy transition,” said Jackson of his relationship with Cohen and Stanford. “I was talking to Stanford and Vanderbilt, and with Coach Cohen going to Stanford they just kind of combined. They haven’t offered me officially, but now I have a great relationship with them.”
A school that will always be linked with Jackson is Georgetown. Both of his parents were athletes at Georgetown. His father played under John Thompson for the Hoyas, and now Patrick Ewing Jr is recruiting Jackson to the school.
“It is like talking to somebody who is a brother,” said Jackson of Ewing Jr. “He is very similar to me. His dad played in the NBA and went to Georgetown just like my dad did. It is cool to kind of talk to somebody who will keep it real with you in recruiting.”
Georgetown has always tried to make everything about family, and while they are using that sell, Jackson makes it clear that they know he is going to make his own decision.
“They don’t stress that because they know my decision isn’t my dad or my mom’s, but it is something that comes in my head a little bit since I know my dad had a great four years there,” noted Jackson. “They don’t stress that, but they do mention it.”
In terms of what is next, Jackson isn’t going to rush the process, but he also doesn’t want it dragging out until next spring either.
“I don’t know about official visits, but I will probably narrow it down a little bit after AAU, and then I should probably commit before January,” said Jackson.