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Villanova football recruiting: ‘Cats offer 2018 ATH Jalen Jackson

The Richmond native is an impact player in all aspects of football for Thomas Jefferson High School.

David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

This past season, Richmond native Jalen Jackson did almost everything on the gridiron for Thomas Jefferson High School (Va.) except coach the team and drive the bus.

Jackson, a 5-foot-10 and 205-pound rising senior, racked up almost 1,800 yards of total offense last season, playing many different positions for the Vikings.

He was responsible for 19 touchdowns between his time as a quarterback and running back.

Defensively, he played outside linebacker, but could also play as a safety. He also led the Vikings in tackles and interceptions.

To top it all off, he also proved his worth on special teams, as a dynamic kick returner. He added five more touchdowns to his name on special teams, and was tabbed a second team all-conference pick for his returning duties.

Villanova has taken notice of Jackson, offering the two-way athlete on Tuesday.

The Wildcats became the most recent Division I school to offer Jackson, whose recruitment has spiked since receiving his first offer back in early May.

Aside from Villanova, fellow CAA schools--Delaware and Elon--Norfolk State, VMI, FBS-school Old Dominion, and Division II's UVA-Wise have all offered the Thomas Jefferson star.

At the collegiate level, Jackson is panning out to either play as a running back or a defensive back. He hasn't decided which side of the ball to specialize in just yet, but a clearer picture may emerge as he undergoes his senior season this fall. He is talented enough to contribute on either offense or defense.

Jackson boasts a 4.49 second 40-yard dash time, with a 37-inch vertical to go along with it. This speed and explosiveness translates to all facets of the game in football and is evident through the numbers he put up this past season.

Villanova has a deep secondary, but it will be graduating four players--who have either started or played a large amount at those positions--after this upcoming season: Trey Johnson, Malik Reaves, Rob Rolle, and Rasaan Stewart. However, the Wildcats will be welcoming three freshmen defensive backs this fall.

On the other side of the ball, at running back, Matt Gudzak will also be graduating. Aaron Forbes and reserve Corey Russo will be seniors the following year.