With the recruiting class of 2003 now in the books, WeAreSC starts it's coverage on the next class with super talented tailback Terrell Jackson. The Corona-Centennial star discusses his junior season and talks about the early recruiting attention that he's receiving.
One junior prospect who is already at the top of many college coaches' wish list is Corona-Centennial's Terrell Jackson. Considered to be one of the top tailbacks in the state in next year's class, the 5'9, 185 pound speedster put up a staggering 2,344 yards and 50 touchdowns for his team en route to a CIF Championship. Although he's primarily known for his wheels, Jackson is by no means a one dimensional player, "I like to model myself after Marshall Faulk," he said. "Somebody that can catch the ball out of the backfield, can juke you, and can run over you. I don't want it to be like ‘Terrell Jackson can just run past you as a speed burner, or Terrell Jackson can just juke you, or Terrell Jackson can just run you over.' I want to be a combination back. I want to be the first, second, and third down guy."
Jackson's combination of talents were never more on display than when it counted most last year, in the CIF Championship game against J.W. North. In that game, he was unstoppable and scored all eight of his team's touchdown's in a 57-55 win, "Our o-line was just getting a nice push off the ball and when we went off tackle, with my tackles and center pulling, we just had an edge on the them and we just exploited their weakness I guess," he said. "I just got in that zone and my o-line was just blowing them off the ball and we did it."
With recruiting for the 2004 class just getting under way, Jackson is just beginning to see his recruitment heat up, "I've heard from Oregon, Hawaii, and Cal mostly," he explained. "Just from coaches coming in and meeting our players, and coach calling me into the office and stuff like that. I've gotten a couple of letters from Boston College, Cal, Oregon, Oregon State,…most of the Pac-10 really. Also Colorado and Texas A&M. I've gotten a couple questionnaires from USC. I have offers from Hawaii and Cal." Jackson admits that without much to go on right now, he's pretty wide open, "I don't really have any favorites. I'm willing to go anywhere if it's the right system for me and if it fits my style as a running back. Growing up, I always wanted to go to like a Florida State or something, but now that I'm older, I can see the programs better. I really like SC and UCLA, the local schools, but I'm willing to go anywhere. I'm looking pretty much at the campus atmosphere, education, and if they have a good football team or if their football team is on the rise. Cal, their team is on the rise. SC, they're at the top. UCLA is probably going to be coming back with Coach Dorrell."
Although Jackson is so open, when the topic of USC came up, it's apparent that he's done his homework and is impressed with what he's seen from the Trojans, "I have a whole lot of interest in SC. Me being a running back, it's tailback U, that's what they call it. Mike Garrett, OJ Simpson, Charles White, it doesn't get any better than going to USC as a running back. That's just history. You have to keep up with the old players so you can be one of the best. I've never been to a USC game but I heard they're pretty exciting. I watched all of their games on TV. I'm a big fan. They're always on Fox Sports or somewhere, so you can always catch it. I plan on going if they invite me to Junior Day at USC. I'm going to go down there and attend and check out the campus and meet the coaches and stuff. I'm all for that." Jackson is also taking into account the offensive schemes of the different schools and likes what he has seen from Norm Chow's offense, as he explained, "It's more of a wide open offense. It's like what we run at my school now, but we run four receivers and they run three receivers with a tight end with one running back. That's cool with me because it's easier to find lanes and if you hit the hole, you might be gone."
Jackson, who runs a 4.48 forty and maxes on the squat at 385 lbs, plans on attending the Nike Camp this Summer as well as a team camp at USC or UCLA. Already academically qualified, Jackson is in no hurry to pick a college once the offers start rolling in, "I want to take all of my official visits. I think some people just jump in too quick without even knowing about the other schools around. I know SC is a good school, but that might not be for me. I have to check out the other schools and my mom wants to do that too."