Jackson Talks About IU Official

Columbus, Ohio, offensive lineman Mark Jackson talks about his official visit to Indiana this weekend, the other schools he's considering, and the fact he's going to make his decision in the coming days...

A decision isn't too far away for 6-5, 290-pound offensive tackle Mark Jackson.

The Columbus, Ohio, native made his first official visit this weekend to Indiana, and has a couple more planned as well. He's headed to Champaign, Ill., to visit Illinois next weekend, and could be looking to squeeze in a visit to Michigan State in the not too distant future.

Jackson said those three Big Ten schools are pretty much even at this point, but one will likely come to the forefront soon since a final decision is less than two weeks away for the Cincinnati Harmony Prep School standout.

"I won't take all five visits because I graduate in 11 days, so I have to make a decision pretty quickly," Jackson said.

In fact, Jackson said he plans to make his decision on the day of his graduation, and then enroll in January.

"Enrolling in January will be a big help to me," said Jackson. "I'll be able to go through winter workouts and I'll know the plays. It's better than going in June. I'm trying to be a starter before the season starts, so that will be a big help."

So might that be at Indiana? Jackson said his visit to Bloomington was a good one, and he came away impressed with what Indiana has to offer. Indiana has been recruiting Jackson for nearly two years now, dating back to 2005 when he was a senior at Brookhaven H.S., and then again this fall after he enrolled at Harmony to get his academics in order for a Division I scholarship.

"I started looking at (Indiana) this year because they were pretty much the only school that was writing me handwritten letters, letting me know how much they wanted me," Jackson said. "That's why I decide to take an official visit there."

During his official visit, Jackson had an opportunity to tour IU's athletic and academic facilities, while also taking in IU's 74-57 victory over Charlotte Saturday night. He also had a chance to meet IU President Dr. Adam Herbert, who talked about the direction the program is headed under Coach Terry Hoeppner.

"The visit went really well, and I liked the whole staff," Jackson said. "As for the players, I felt I really connected with them right away. They're a great group of guys.

"Then, the program is going in the right direction – they're just young right now. But they are going to be up there in the next year or two."

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