Jackson sky-high on Card, with one caveat

Three-star defensive end Tim Jackson looms as one of the larger recruiting targets left on Stanford's board for the 2010 class, literally and figuratively. He has offers from nearly 20 schools, but has narrowed down his list of prospective schools to a group that includes Stanford.

Earlier this month, the talented defender made the long journey from his home near St. Petersburg, Fla. to Palo Alto for an official visit with his parents.

Given the official visit was Tim Jackson's first trip out to The Farm, he was taken on a thorough campus tour and had a chance to see the football facilities. Later, the recruit got to tour the EA Sports headquarters before meeting with a number of staff members from the Stanford football community.

Over the course of his visit, Tim Jackson met with representatives from the admissions office, academic advising, athletic director Bob Bowlsby, and most of the Stanford coaching staff, including head coach Jim Harbaugh.

Jackson had a chance to ask the Stanford head man about his potential interest in other coaching opportunities.

"I asked him about the Notre Dame job and he said he wasn't interested in leaving for any other college job right now, so he, and the coaching staff, plans to stay," Jackson said.

In all, Jackson seemed to have a good visit, but admits that the California environment was quite different than what he is accustomed to.

"It was definitely different from where I'm from," Jackson said. It's a whole different culture basically."

And that might ultimately prove problematic in Stanford's pursuit of the three-star prospect.

Heading into visit Jackson had one main question to clear up – would he feel comfortable attending a school located over 3,000 miles away from his home in Florida?

"That was a big question going in I was trying to get answered," Jackson said. "Everything at Stanford was top-notch - the facilities, coaches, the program, the football team, everything. But I got kind of homesick and I was there for three days. It's a natural feeling but I didn't think I'd feel it over a three-day span."

Still, Jackson says that plans to fill out the Stanford application and that the Cardinal will have a shot at his signature come signing day.

"My interest in them is still high," he said. "I'm still going to go through and finish the application because if I get accepted that's going to be another positive."

When it comes time to make a decision, though, Jackson will have to decide if going away for college outweighs all the benefits that would come with playing football at Stanford.

"Everything is just great, everything is perfect, the [distance is] the only knock," Jackson said. "I'm trying to find out [how much the distance issue really matters.] I'm not at that point yet.

"As far as what they have to offer I don't think anybody can top them. [Nobody can top] the program, football team, school, the degree that you can get from Stanford."

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