"I think I am going to be committing soon," Jordan "J. J." Jackson said Tuesday. "I think that is going to be a relief."
The Woodgrove (Purcellville, Va.) DE/OLB currently has five offers on the table: Virginia, Hampton, Old Dominion, Yale and Ohio University. But there is one school standing out.
"UVa is far ahead," said Jackson. "That is the ideal school for me; the academics, the football program, and all the love they have been showing me."
"I can see myself there. I loved the campus when I visited. It was an awesome experience."
Jackson says he has remained in contact with the Virginia coaching staff, and that contact has really helped move the Cavaliers up the top school standing
"That shows number one, they have great interest in me," explains Jackson. "Coach (Vincent) Brown I really liked him. My first visit there he showed me around and we really connected. I feel like I am already part of the family there at UVa."
"This group right here, I talked to Coach (Mike) London and he said to me, you know what J-J, this recruiting class we have for Virginia is the best recruiting class that UVa has ever seen. He even brought in Chris Long!"
"If I go there with him (Quin Blanding) and a couple of other buddies; UVa can be a winning team," he said. "I am looking at some of the recruits that they have committed there, and we have some serious talent. I can see myself with those guys and winning games and being a force to be reckon with at UVa."
The 6-foot-4 220 pound defensive end is in a very different situation than most recruits getting ready for their senior season. Jackson joined the recruiting game a little late compared to most prospects. The Wolverine's standout was a basketball convert and only played high school football last year- his junior season. And after notching up 12 sacks and racked up 82 tackles in 11 games, schools are knocking.
"This is the beginning of the recruiting process and that is what is holding me back," explains Jackson. "I want to see what everyone else has to offer. Whether UNC, Wake Forest, Ohio, all those other schools offer me. I just got a letter in the mail today from Cincinnati. I am originally from Cincinnati - so I want to keep my options open right now."
There is one school Jackson is keeping his eye on.
"If I wait a little longer and UNC decides to offer that would put everything off track. It would stir everything up."
Although, he still wants to keep an open mind to new offers, he also is trying to make a decision by the end of May, beginning of June - even if it means pulling the trigger on schools like UNC before they offer.
"I figure that I am not one of their primary targets," he said. "They don't have a spot for me. So I put things in perspective."
"The recruiting class for UVa is starting to fill up. People are starting to realize UVa is going to be, I believe, a top three team in the ACC in the next 3 seasons."
Why the commitment timeline? Although he says he would love to take the time and explore all his options, the Woodgrove rising star tells HooNation that these last few weeks have been stressful with trips and camps. But what worries him most is getting his mind and body ready for the college season.
"God forbid I get hurt, what type of position am I putting myself in. Part of me wants to get it out of the way now so everything is set in stone, and I have a secure spot with whatever program I choose."
"Plus I want to make sure senior year all my grades are right, so I can keep my scholarships. I want to make sure my senior year is not clogged up with all this recruiting stuff so I can concentrate on my school work and enjoy my senior year."
And of course the earlier a recruit commits, the earlier he can begin following the training program of his choice of school.
"Thats the difference in playing your freshman year if you want to or becoming a red shirt or practice squad member," Jackson stated. "I want to get prepared for whatever program I choose. I can take all the time and put my efforts and get my body right for college football."