UNC Offers JuCo DE

UNC Offers JuCo DE

Toby Jackson, a JuCo defensive end, received a scholarship offer from North Carolina on Wednesday.

"I like North Carolina," Jackson said. "It's a good school. I definitely want to take a visit there. I have a couple of homeboys that play for North Carolina."

Nearly 20 schools have offered Jackson, a 6-foot-5, 265-pounder, including Alabama, Baylor, Central Florida, Florida State, Georgia, Miami, Oklahoma State, South Florida, Tennessee, and Texas Tech.

Wednesday marked the second time UNC has offered Jackson a scholarship. As a senior at Griffin (Ga.) High School, UNC was among the 30-plus schools nation-wide that offered the then four-star prospect.

"When North Carolina came and offered me [back then], it was like ‘Ok, another school,' because at that time there was a bunch of schools back-to-back giving me offers," Jackson said. "I thought about North Carolina, but I decided to go the other way."

After taking official visits to Georgia, Miami, and USC, Jackson decided to stay in-state and opted for the Bulldogs on Signing Day 2008.

When he failed to academically qualify, Georgia placed Jackson at Chatham (Va.) Hargrave Military Academy. There he played alongside current Tar Heels A.J. Blue and Kevin Reddick.

Jackson eventually withdrew from Hargrave and enrolled at Corsicana (Texas) Navarro Junior College the following year.

"There was a situation that went down, so I just withdrew," Jackson said. "So the best decision for me was to go to a JuCo.

"I was just looking at the top JuCos in the nation and came across Navarro. I talked to the head coach and he said they wanted me. The next day I was there."

Jackson will graduate from Navarro in December and then enroll in a four-year university in January with two years of eligibility remaining, plus a red-shirt season.

"I've been through the recruiting process before – I was a big prospect in high school," Jackson said. "I've seen all the big facilities and housing areas – I'm not really looking for that right now. I'm looking at college as a business move, because wherever I go, I'm only going to have two years to play. So I need to go somewhere and get on the field fast.

"Every school that calls me, I let them know they don't have to sell their campus or their big facilities – I've seen the best. It's more about how can you develop me [and] what can you do for me to get to the next level."

With that said, Jackson has noticed Butch Davis's propensity for sending players to the NFL.

"He's sending players to the League at North Carolina and he sent players to the League when he was at Miami," Jackson said.

Also working in UNC's favor is Blue, who keeps in regular contact with Jackson.

"I have friends playing all across the nation at different schools," Jackson said. "So I won't say [Blue being at UNC] will play a big part, but it will help [UNC]. It would make it easier, because I know I have a friend there already."

Regardless, Jackson doesn't claim a favorite school.

"I'm pretty much open to everybody," Jackson said. "I'm really just focused on my grades and I'm just weighing my options when it comes to schools."

One might assume that Georgia would have an advantage over other schools, since he signed with the Bulldogs out of high school. But Jackson says that's definitely not that case.

"I'll say this right now: I'm not going back to Georgia," Jackson said. "... It's nothing against Georgia. I just feel like I'll be a lot better away from home."

Following Navarro's football season, Jackson will take his official visits and then select a school. He doesn't have any trips scheduled, but plans to include Central Florida, Miami, and UNC within his official visit schedule.

Navarro is currently 7-1 and ranked third in the NJCAA. On the season, Jackson has 25 tackles (17 solo), including three for a loss and 2.5 sacks.

During his freshman season, he accumulated 33 tackles (12 solo), including six for a loss and a sack in eight games.

Toby Jackson Profile

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