Jackson Ready for Pads Today

Notre Dame freshman wide receiver Bennett Jackson from Raritan High School (Hazlet, N.J.) has already won the state title in the 110-Meter hurdles. Now he turns his attention to the nationals held this Thursday in North Carolina.

Notre Dame needs to improve its team speed and they have some headed to campus in the form of Bennett Jackson (6-foot-1, 170-pounds). Jackson and the other members of the freshman class will begin showing up to campus this week, but before Bennett joins his classmates, he has to take care of some unfinished business .

"Right now, I'm pretty much trying to finish up school the right way and get everything done," Jackson said. "We don't finish school until June 23, but I'm also trying to finish up track. I have nationals this Thursday, so I leave school on the 17th, which my last day of school. I'm exempt from my finals and my principal said that it's to skip the week of class, because I don't have any absences.

"I think the nationals are at North Carolina A&T. My expectations are to win. I know everyone's expectation is to win, but I think I have pretty good chance. I think I'll be able to run a faster time, like I've been doing. I've been doing really well so far. I think this will be more of a challenge, but the more competition there is will just help me perform better."

Jackson has had to juggle the success he's had at the track with the need to be prepared for reporting to Notre Dame. He's had to alternate his workouts so that he has enough left in the tank to perform his best at the national track meet.

"They gave me a play book of the formations and the names of the basic formations and routes," Jackson explained." I do have a workout packet. Track doesn't prevent me from doing the workouts. I just change the days so I don't have a track workout when I'm doing legs and when I have a track workout, I upper in instead. I don't overwork myself, because I know my limits. I think I workout just right."

In addition to the workouts, Jackson has also has been studying Brian Kelly's offense so that he can be hit the ground running when he arrives in South Bend.

"I'm excited to get out to school, but I won't have a break, because we start summer school right away," he explained. "It's all probably come up on me faster than I expect it to, but I'm ready for it. I've been waiting for it since the day I committed.

"I want to get up to Notre Dame and do the right things and make my way onto the field. I'm definitely looking forward to starting football. I hate the off-season. I want to put the pads and get to practice and camp. I'm not trying to red-shirt this year. I really want to make it on the field and I think I can do that as long as I work hard. I'll just see what happens, but I'm just waiting to get out there now."

IrishIllustrated.com Top Stories