Interview with Jonathan Jackson

Jonathan Jackson of Philadelphia is considering Wisconsin as he heads down the stretch. Steve Curry of caught up with Jackson to see where he stands.

Jonathan Jackson was instrumental in helping West Catholic to a 9-4 record, advancing all the way to the Catholic League championship before losing to Archbishop Carroll, 22-7.

He played wide-receiver and free safety. Colleges are primarily looking at him to play either free safety or corner at the next level. Jackson prefers playing on the defensive side of the ball.

"He had 19 catches for 415 yards and 7 touchdowns this year," West Catholic head coach Brian Fluck told LionNews earlier this month. "He also had 18 carries for 135 yards and 3 touchdowns. On defense, he finished up with 92 total tackles, 73 were solos. He had 3 sacks, 5 interceptions and 18 pass breakups.

"Jon has great instincts around the ball. He's always flying to the ball. That's why we put him in the middle of the field at the free safety position for us. He's a big-time hitter for us coming from that safety position. We call him the eraser because he erases any mistakes that are made upfront. On the offensive side he's a game-breaker for us."

"My first visit was to Minnesota (12/6), then Syracuse (12/13) and then Wisconsin (12/20)," Jonathan said Sunday night. "They were nice."

Did any one of those stick out?

"Syracuse, I like Syracuse, Wisconsin too."

Did he like Syracuse better?

"I don't know. It's kind of hard to pick and choose."

What does he like about Syracuse?

"I don't know. Syracuse, it could've just been a gut feeling."

How about Wisconsin?

"Wisconsin was just good all around, in every area, from football to academics. Syracuse has good academics too. Wisconsin had a good strength and conditioning program, real good."

Jackson, however, does not have a current favorite.

"I'm not leaning towards anybody."

He has at least one more visit to take.

"I have Penn State on January 17 and I was supposed to go to Iowa but I'm not sure. I have to take the SAT that weekend. I haven't talked to them (Iowa) in a while. It's been a month or a little bit more. But, I just got their letter about 3 days ago offering me a full scholarship."

All of the teams mentioned have offered Jackson a scholarship.

According to Jackson, Minnesota is recruiting him to play corner, Wisconsin and Syracuse are recruiting him to play safety and Penn State is recruiting him to play either.

The Nittany Lions stepped up their recruitment of Jonathan last month after seeing his senior highlight film.

Jackson and his head coach took an unofficial visit to Penn State during the first week of this month. They met with some of the coaches including Joe Paterno and toured the facilities and campus.

Ron Vanderlinden is recruiting Jonathan for Penn State. Coach Norwood has also visited with Jonathan.

"I'm looking for an environment where I could see myself being there for 4 years, even if I was hurt. I'm also looking for good academics and playing time."

Is he looking for a city campus or a rural campus?

"I'm guessing a city campus, because I'm not used to barns and all that out in the middle of nowhere. It really doesn't matter because I can adjust."

What did he think of Penn State's campus?

"It was real nice up there. It seemed like everything was brand new."

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