CAMP QUOTES: RB Deonte Jackson

Sidelined the last couple weeks, Idaho starting tailback DEONTE JACKSON was back in form this week. A Second Team All-WAC selection last fall as a redshirt freshman, Jackson's phenominal 2008 season included setting an Idaho freshman record with 1,175 yards on the season (4th nationally among freshmen runningbacks), and being picked an Honorable Mention Freshman All-American by The Sporting News.

PLAYER PROFILE: Deonte Jackson, 5-8, 191, So, RB

Q: Are you getting back into the flow of things?
DEONTE JACKSON: "Oh, yes. It felt real good to finally be back out here full speed, full contact. It felt real good being out here."

Q: How hard was it before? I know you were on the sidelines for a couple of scrimmages and just watching things. How hard was that on you?
DJ: "It was very hard, seeing the great job my offense came out and did the first scrimmage. Second scrimmage they well also, and to see my young pups, my younger brothers along side me doing a good job running, hitting their holes, showing that they understand and can execute our offense. It was hard, but it was a wonderful thing to see my brothers getting the job done out there on the field."

Q: How about the back? Is it something that you're going to have to monitor all year you think?
DJ: "Uh, probably all the rest of my life, but it's not going to stop me. I'm going to keep working, keep it under control, make sure I just take are of my body and it's going to take care of me."

Q: What do you have to do, special treatments, stretching?
DJ: "Yeah, I have to do a lot of stretching; just make sure I'm getting my hips back in line and my spine back straight up underneath me, making sure I've got all my muscles working without me having to think about them, making sure they keep me tight, carry me upright, taking the least amount of stress on my spine."

Q: Ideally you will probably get fewer carries than last year since you do have some more guys with you. Are you all right with that, that it might be less touches this year?
DJ: "I'm perfectly fine with that, because I think not only with the assistance of the depth at running back, but also with our receiving corps, I don't think as many touches will be needed to put points on the board. I think we're going to get the job done more efficiently than we did last year in the air and on the ground; so fewer touches won't bother me. I'm still going to give it 110% every time I touch the ball, whenever I'm out on the field, whether it's blocking or running. I'm going to get after it. I'm still going to get my yards, and I'd love to see my other brothers get their yards too. We're just going to do it all on six cylinders, but there are 11 out there on the field; hitting on all cylinders."

Q: Maybe being fresher will help you too?
DJ: "Oh definitely, with the extra breath, less stress on the body, fewer hits. I only see positives coming out of the thing. I'm proud and happy about it, looking forward to it."

Q: You know, you guys are doing more stuff with the quarterbacks in the gun this year. What does that change for the running backs? I mean, it is a bit different isn't it?
DJ: "Yeah, it's a bit different. It changes the timing of your run scheme. It makes you have to pick up on your vision a little bit. You have to make sharper reads, quicker reads. You have to not second guess yourself. You have to make a decision and go with it. Not every play's going to be a home run. Sometimes you've just got to ground it out and get five, and that's what we've got to do sometimes. Anything to help the offense work better as a unit. It's not just one of my set things. Whatever we have to do, we're going to get it done. It's not going to change anything. We're still going to get it done on the ground and in the air.

Q: Have you given your uncle [Steven Jackson] any advice on his holdout over in St. Louis?
DJ: "Uh, I told him to stick to his guns."

Q: Well, you're living proof. You know, running back – that's a tough gig, isn't it?
DJ: "Oh yeah."

Q: You get beat up.
DJ: "On TV one day I heard the perfect analogy to being a running back. Every time you get hit it's like being in a car crash. It is a very hard job. It takes a big toll on your body. I can only respect what he's doing. My idol, my leader. I'm proud of him. I support him in everything he's doing, just like he supports me."

ALL Vandals Top Stories