One of the top players in the country has made his college decision, as five-star cornerback Adoree' Jackson has committed to USC. His other three finalists were Florida, LSU, and UCLA, and up until the end, nobody had a solid idea as to where the track star and Olympic hopeful would be playing his college ball.
His other finalists included a bottle of Gatorade and a shoe, apparently (via ESPNU):
Jackson, from Junipero Serra (Calif.), hails from Garden and is listed at 5'9.5 and 182 pounds. A consensus five-star recruit, Rivals rates him as their top cornerback in the class of 2014. The 247sports composite ranks Jackson as a five-star prospect, rating him as the seventh-best prospect in the country, as well as the best cornerback and the top prospect in the state of California.
His addition boosts USC's class into a potential top-15 finish. The Trojans began the day ranked No. 28 in the composite and also picked up Damien Mama, the country's No. 1 guard.
Jackson had offers from other elite programs from around the country, including Oregon, Florida State and Notre Dame. He took his official visits to Tennessee, Florida State, LSU, and Oklahoma, but visited local programs USC and UCLA unofficially on many occasions.
Derrell Warren, SB Nation's West Coast recruiting analyst, scouted Jackson:
Jackson plays on both sides of the ball for Serra High School but best translates to defense, given his overall skill set. He likely fits better at field (wide side) corner as opposed to the boundary (far side) position, as he projects more favorably using his agility and change of direction skills to cover receivers out in space. In nickel packages, one could see him sliding inside and not only lining up over slot wide receivers, but also being used as a blitzer on occasion given the physical nature of his game.
An elite-level playmaker at the cornerback position, Jackson will need to be put in a position to make full use of his ball skills and awareness. On tape, he seems most comfortable in off-man or zone schemes, as opposed to pressing at the line of scrimmage. He will even employ the "triangle" technique at times, turning his hips inside at the snap and keeping both the quarterback and receiver in his line of sight and reading the signal caller's drop as an indication of what route is being run.
On special teams, Jackson is an elite punt returner with excellent vision and lateral burst that help to exploit backside lanes. He's a track star, as well, with a top 200-meter time of 21.69, not to mention having won the state championship in the long jump as a sophomore (personal best of 25 feet and ½ inch) in 2012. Those two feats go to illustrate further how explosive an athlete Jackson is.
With the ball in his hands, Jackson has an almost freakish ability to twist and contort away from pursuers while maintaining his balance through contact. Jackson is an elite talent who compares favorably to former LSU Tiger defender Tyrann Mathieu in terms of his playmaking ability and has the upside to be a multi-year starter for any number of BCS programs.