On Thursday, we started our Class of 2019 Prospect Profile series with running back Devyn Ford. Today, we continue the series with standout defensive end Savion Jackson.
Jackson is a 6-foot-2, 245-pound recruit from Clayton High School in Clayton, N.C. Here is how the major recruiting services rate Jackson…
247Sports: Four-star, No. 34 overall, No. 2 in N.C.
Rivals: Four-star, No. 108 overall, No. 2 in N.C.
ESPN: Four-star, No. 25 overall, No. 1 in N.C.
Jackson’s offer list it not as large as most blue-chip prospects, but his quality of offers is up there with anyone in the country. Jackson boasts offers from the likes of Alabama, Ohio State and Oklahoma, and also holds offers from North Carolina, Duke, NC State and South Carolina.
While Devyn Ford is the top target on offense for Virginia Tech in the 2019 class, Jackson might be the Hokies’ top target on defense. He has visited Virginia Tech for unofficial visits on multiple occasions, including for Virginia Tech basketball’s game vs. Miami on Feb. 3. There are multiple blue-chip recruits on Virginia Tech’s defensive target board, but Jackson might be the biggest priority.
Jackson is a versatile defensive lineman that is used in a variety of ways. He’ll line up on the edge, at defensive tackle or even nose tackle. Part of that is probably to attack the defense from different angles, but it also means that he can hold up in the run game at any spot on the line.
At 245 pounds, Jackson is a good athlete who can change direction and cover ground quickly. He seems to have a high motor, often chasing plays down from the back-side, but motor is something that’s hard to distinguish simply from highlight tape. At the snap, Jackson quickly gets off the line and is able to penetrate into the line of scrimmage before the running back even takes the handoff. He shows the ability to get off of multiple blocks on a single play, and is good at fighting through the trash to chase plays down from behind.
Even as a blue-chip recruit, Jackson has things he’ll need to work on, namely pursuit angles. That’s a common problem among young players, and something that can be coached. But Jackson has other things that cannot be coached — athleticism and talent. Jackson is a well-rounded prospect who has the athleticism and talent to create negative plays on defense. His quick-twitch ability would mesh well in Bud Foster’s defensive scheme.
It’s still early in Jackson’s recruitment, but the Hokies have positioned themselves nicely. Jackson lives just outside the Raleigh area, so distance shouldn’t be an issue. South Carolina and NC State also seem to be in good position for Jackson, while Clemson could assert themselves if they were to issue a scholarship offer. Other elite programs could jump in as well, but nonetheless, Virginia Tech should be involved in Jackson’s recruitment until the very end.