After a strong junior season, Troy (OH) 2019 S Samuel Jackson has continued to see interest in him pick up on the recruiting trail as he hears from several high-level Division 1 programs, including #15 Michigan State.
Spartan Nation caught up with the 6-foot, 210-pound safety to discuss his recruitment and said that while it has its ups and downs, he’s enjoying getting the opportunity to hear from different programs and coaching staffs and envisioning himself playing at the next level.
“It’s a little stressful at times,” he said. “The road is bumpy, sometimes it gets quiet with coaches and then they start coming back in, talking to us in school, getting to know them better and being around them. It gets a little bit frustrating at times, but at the same time, it’s very exciting thinking about where you’re going to be playing ball for the next four years, the people you’re going to be around, the coaches you’re going to be spending time with and it’s great. I love the process.”
While he doesn’t have an offer as of yet, Jackson has received interest from Cincinnati, Michigan State and a handful of MAC programs as well.
Jackson, who visited the Spartans for their game against Notre Dame in the fall and has also been in attendance for some football practices, said that he plans to be back in East Lansing for a Junior Day in the near future and also plans on camping at Michigan State over the summer.
When he’s been in East Lansing, Jackson said that he was impressed by the Michigan State facilities as well as the atmosphere around the program.
“The indoor practice field is just amazing,” he said. “Walking in there – the training staff, everybody is just flying around and it’s really intense. The stadium is amazing, the locker room – I actually got to go in there one time and that was amazing with everything that they’ve re-done in there. It’s just awesome.”
Although the Spartans have not extended an offer to Jackson yet, the standout safety admitted that an offer from Michigan State would be a big deal for him and would like to play for Spartans’ head coach Mark Dantonio.
“That would mean the world to me,” he said. “I really think I’d fit in well with the program, I love the coaches, I love the intensity that Mark Dantonio brings to the practice field every day. I was up for a spring practice last year and I remember watching him and how everybody just flew around, I loved the intensity and the atmosphere, it was great. Playing at Michigan State would mean the world to me.”
After a successful junior season at the high school level, where he helped lead his team to a second straight playoff appearance, Jackson said that he’s spending his offseason working to get better and has been focusing on gaining strength and foot speed with the hopes of leading his team to the postseason once again this fall.
“Right now, I’m really just trying to work on my foot speed and increasing that a little bit,” he said. “I’ve been working out a lot with our strength and conditioning coach, he’s done a great job with our conditioning, my bench has gotten up to 315, squatting around 450. Just trying to keep the foot speed with all of the strength that I’m adding and that’s going to play a factor in my play this year.”
Stay tuned to Spartan Nation for all of the latest news on this top safety out of the state of Ohio and the Spartans!
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