Fighting Artichokes For A Day

Arkansas head coach Bobby Petrino and assistant Chris Klenakis have been recruiting out West this week and will be honorary Fighting Artichokes for a day according to Scottsdale CC tight end Blake Jackson (6-4, 235), who will join with teammate Mike Pennel (6-5, 345) in getting a visit from the pair.

Artichokes for a Day.

That's what Scottsdale (AZ) Community College tight end Blake Jackson (6-4, 235) says he is dubbing Arkansas head coach Bobby Petrino and assistant Chris Klenakis for today.

Those two Razorback coaches are in Scottsdale on Wednesday to visit Jackson and his teammate – defensive lineman Mike Pennel (6-5, 345) – whose team's mascot is the Fighting Artichokes.

"They are going to be honorary Fighting Artichokes for a day," Jackson said. "I always love talking to those guys and Big Mike and I are excited about their visit."

Jackson – who says he will make his decision public on Dec. 7th – is a December graduate who will take his fifth and final official visit this weekend.

It's to Oklahoma State, who is hosting arch rival Oklahoma – a place Jackson visited last week.

Jackson visited Miami back in the summer and has also taken visits to Arkansas and Georgia.

"I loved my visit to Arkansas, I loved my visit to Georgia, I loved my visit to Oklahoma and I am sure I am going to love my visit to Oklahoma State," Jackson said. "I just feel so blessed to have such great options."

Jackson, who had 62 catches for 934 yards and 16 touchdowns this season, admitted that he almost cut the process short after visiting Arkansas and Georgia.

"Yes, I was very, very close to announcing last week," Jackson said. "But then I decided that I needed to just slow down, take all the visits and make sure I am making the right decision."

Jackson said he goes into this final visiting with a leader.

"Yes, I have a very good idea of where I am going to go, but I am not going to say who that is as it would not be fair to the other schools and I also might be blown away this weekend," Jackson said.

Jackson will sign on Dec. 21, the opening day of national junior college signing period that runs through Jan. 15th.

"I have decided that I am going to announce on December 7th," Jackson said. "That's next Wednesday."

Pennel, who visited Arkansas with Jackson and went to Texas A&M for an official last weekend, had hoped to sign then as well.

But it now appears he will not be a mid-term grad and will have to stay at Scottsdale CC for another semester.

"That's what it looks like now and he's pretty bummed out about it," Jackson said. "I know Arkansas is going to get here and look at his transcript to see if there is anyway he might be able to get it, but it looks like he will have to stay a little longer."

He had 37 tackles this season with 13 for lost yardage and two sacks.

Arkansas has also visited Chandler (AZ) wideout Javon Williams (6-5, 175) and Rocklin (NV) Sierra CC wide receiver Courtney Gardner (6-3, 215) while out West the past two days.

Blake Jackson

Mike Pennel

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