The Alabama Crimson Tide have picked up a very important commitment from 4-star wide receiver Eddie Jackson out of Fort Lauderdale, FL.
Jackson checks in at 6'1'', 175 pounds and he really sets himself apart with his speed. He runs a 4.38 40 according to 247Sports.
Greg Ostendorf of ESPN.com reports on the commitment:
Eddie Jackson has come a long way. The four-star athlete was an unknown until late in the recruiting cycle. On Wednesday, he gave a verbal commitment to the University of Alabama, the reigning national champions.
“I like how the program is run,” Jackson said. “It’s just everything that they stand for. I can be that guy from Fort Lauderdale, the first guy to come up there and have a chance, a chance to go up there and play.”
Nick Saban's 2013 class now boasts 22 commitments,and it very well could end up being an elite class when all is said and done. At least on paper, Alabama has one of the best recruiting classes in the nation. It's ranked No. 3 overall by Rivals.com.
What exactly is Jackson bringing to the table in particular?
The kicker is, while Jackson may be ranked as a wide receiver, he can also play corner. According to Ostendorf's report, the talented recruit talked to Saban about playing in the secondary for Alabama:
“They want me to play defensive back,” Jackson said. “Coach Saban told me there’s a good opportunity for me to start my freshman year, come in and play early. That really sounded good. I’m just ready to go in there and compete.”
Frankly, this would make the most sense and it is the best option for Jackson.
The Crimson Tide are going to be very deep at wideout in 2013. Amari Cooper is going to be the star of the unit, but Alabama also boasts Kevin Norwood, Kenny Bell and Christion Jones—who will all be productive. That's not even mentioning DeAndrew White, redshirt freshman Chris Black and 2013 5-star commitment Robert Foster (if he signs), who will all compete for playing time.
Conversely, Alabama won't be as deep at corner. Dee Milliner is heading to the NFL, and that leaves John Fulton, Deion Belue, Bradley Sylve, Geno Smith and Jabriel Washington.
Because of his speed and size, Jackson could come in right away and at least compete to get into the rotation. According to his quotes via Ostendorf's report, Saban thinks he can start as a freshman, and the opportunity will certainly be there.
At 6'1'', he's big enough to really play physical at the line of scrimmage and jam defenders, and his speed will allow him to cover just about any receiver that an offense can throw at him.
He fits the cornerback mold for Alabama and he has incredible potential.
His time as a wide receiver should also help him when it comes to route recognition and with picking up the little nuances of a quarterback or wideout that will help him gain an advantage in coverage.
Jackson should be able to work his way into the lineup as a nickel or dime corner at first, but if given the opportunity I wouldn't be surprised if he challenged for one of the starting spots.
Overall, Jackson represents a big recruiting pickup for the Crimson Tide.
He'll be a competitor at cornerback and he has tremendous potential.