This past week, the James Madison University football program got two pieces of good news.
First, ESPN announced it was bringing College Game Day to the campus on Saturday.
The other is the Dukes landed perhaps the best defensive player in the Richmond area.
Hermitage linebacker Mateo Jackson, who has built himself quite the resume when it comes to reeling in college offers and performance on the field, has made a verbal commitment to play for the defending FCS National Champions.
Jackson, who is in the midst of a perfect season thus far for the Panthers, weighed a bevy of offers before making his announcement. He announced the decision on Twitter on his page @Tayo14_ and said:
“Excited to announce my commitment to James Madison.”
Last season, the 6-2, 215-pounder recorded 124 tackles last season on his way to a stellar year and this season he opened the season with clutch interceptions in his first three contest.
He joins St. Christopher’s lineman Henry Schroeder, as members of the Class of 2018 from the area, who have committed to JMU.
In August, Jackson picked his 15th college offer from Dartmouth University, a member of the prestigious Ivy League and also an offer from James Madison University, the defending FCS National Champions.
Hermitage coach Patrick Kane is happy for his rising senior linebacker.
“He’s an excellent student and leader,” Kane said. “He has all the intangibles. He’s a very physical player with great instincts and good hands.”
In addition to the most recent offers handed down from Liberty and Villanova, many other colleges had taken notice in how hard Mateo Jackson works on and off the field. Those schools consist of Navy, Army, Richmond, Elon, Bucknell, Norfolk State, Howard, Cincinnati, Morgan State, Kent State, Air Force, Liberty, and Villanova.
The Panthers continue their unbeaten quest this Friday against Mills Godwin.