We'll be spotlighting a few kids each day as we roll out our HomeTeam 100 countdown. Up now in the queue: Hernando Jeremiah Jackson, who comes in at No. 94 (see 91-100 here).
2011 stats: 714 yards rushing, 6.8 yards a carry, 10 TDs; 47 tackles, four sacks
The breakdown: Hernando junior Jeremiah Jackson isn’t the most high-profile linebacker on his team — that honor belongs to Division I recruit Darren Hambrick. He’s not the leading rusher, either, because he lines up in a backfield with D-I prospect Tyrail Hawkins.
But Jackson is one of Tampa Bay’s most complete players. The 6-foot-1, 205-pound wrecking ball was a two-way standout last fall at linebacker and fullback, earning all-North Suncoast honors.
In the Leopards’ run-heavy offense, Jackson put up some of the best numbers on the team. He bruised his way into the end zone for a touchdown and two-point conversion that gave Hernando the lead in a heartbreaking playoff loss to Gainesville, and his 33-yard touchdown burst gave Hernando a two-score lead in a season-changing win over Land O’Lakes.
He was as important on defense, helping the Leopards earn their first district title since 1997.
Florida State, Miami and Iowa State have already shown interest in Jackson, and more accolades should flow this fall.