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Wednesday, February 5, 2014
Five-star cornerback Jackson picks USC

By Erik McKinney and Tom Luginbill

The wait is finally over for Adoree' Jackson (Gardena, Calif./Serra), who entered Wednesday as the top uncommitted prospect in the country.

Jackson, the No. 9 overall prospect and No. 3 cornerback in the nation, was able to keep just about everyone guessing until the moment of his signing day announcement, when he declared that he will join the USC Trojans this fall.

Adoree Jackson
Adoree' Jackson, who is ranked as the top prospect in California, has signed with USC.
What he brings: Though Jackson has a modest frame (5-foot-10, 182 pounds), he also has big-time speed and explosiveness. He is a skill prospect who likely could play on either side of the ball at the next level, but we believe he will develop at corner. He has a chance to be a difference-maker with his speed and recovery burst out on the perimeter.

Jackson possesses great feet, loose hips and smooth transition skills for a cover corner and is well-versed in coverages. His polished ball skills make receiver an option at the next level and he should be a valuable kick returner.

Who he reminds us of: TCU CB Jason Verrett. Though he is shorter than other prospects, Jackson’s overall man coverage skills are more advanced than most in this class. Verrett, an All-American, brings a similar skill to his game at the college level. What he might lack in ideal height (5-10), he makes up for with feet, explosion, smooth hips and a competitive temperament. It also helps to be a dynamic player with the ball in your hands, which both players are.

Potential freshman impact: With his speed, athleticism and excellent versatility, we believe Jackson will have a good chance to contribute early at the college level and find a role, at least as a returner. The game comes naturally to this playmaker and we feel the transition to college will be smooth.

How he fits: Jackson likely will provide immediate help at wide receiver for the Trojans, a position that occasionally had only one healthy player for practices last fall, due to injuries and scholarship reductions. Jackson also could be called upon to play cornerback, and he is an outstanding special teams returner.