Jackson Makes his Decision

Deciding he no longer wanted to go through the recruiting process, 2012 running back Vonte Jackson (Kenosha Bradford (Wis.) High) gives Wisconsin coach Bret Bielema his verbal commitment Saturday. Jackson goes in-depth with Badger Nation about his decision.

MADISON – The more Vonte Jackson thought about his decision, the more the junior running back from Kenosha Bradford wanted to get it over with.

Each school Jackson went to, he compared that school to Wisconsin, who was his first offer and with Head Coach Bret Bielema telling Jackson he was going to be their one and only target, he knew his best option for success was less than three hours from home.

So after watching spring practice Saturday afternoon, Jackson had a meeting with Bielema and told him he wanted to be a part of the program. Originally saying he was going to wait until just before his senior season to commit, Jackson understandably caught the coach off guard.

"He was real excited," Jackson told Badger Nation Saturday. "He thought I was going to wait it out, but I decided that I wanted to commit today."

Jackson, a 6-foot, 185-pound three-star running back from Kenosha Bradford High School had previously visited Michigan State and Northwestern this spring and said those schools were his other two favorites. Jackson also had offers from Illinois, Iowa and Minnesota.

But after running for 956 yards and 13 touchdowns his junior season, Jackson knew the UW offense was where he could succeed.

"Wisconsin gives me the opportunity to be a successful running back," Jackson said. "They had three running backs run for around 1,000 yards last season. To be able to get on the field and play and prove myself is real big for me.

"Spring practice had high tempo, intense and the game speed is a lot faster coming out of high school."

Jackson was the only true running back offered in its 2012 recruiting class, something that wasn't going to change until Jackson made his decision on what college he was going to attend.

"That was another big thing about Wisconsin because they showed how committed they were to me," said Jackson. "With them only taking one running back, I figured why not commit to them?"

The next focus for Jackson is to prepare for his senior year of high school at Bradford, where he will be the main running back in place of 2011 UW commit Melvin Gordon. After falling just short of the state final last season, Jackson plans to one up his good friend this season.

"I will be able to focus solely on my team and getting better," Jackson said. "It will be all about the team. I want to leave with a state championship. That's big to me."

Jackson is Wisconsin's second verbal commit, joining Illinois offensive lineman Dan Voltz.

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