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The Cardinal Countdown: 14 Days Until Kickoff

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: NOV 09 Louisville at Syracuse Photo by Gregory Fisher/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

#14 Thomas Jackson

Class: 6th Year Senior

Ht/Wt: 5-11/200

Position: Wide Receiver

Hometown: Charlotte, NC

Twitter: N/A

Thoughts: Amid all the craziness of the transfer portal, Louisville adding 2020 commits, summer getting started, etc it was hard to keep up with everything going on in the program back in May/June. One of the more under the radar additions to the Louisville program was sixth year senior Thomas Jackson.

Jackson comes to the Cards from UNC, where the former walk-on showed on a few different occasions he could perform at an ACC level (including against UofL in 2017). So how did Jackson end up at Louisville? Enter one Gunter Brewer. Brewer was previously the wide receivers coach at UNC before leaving to spend a year with the Philadelphia Eagles. During that time Brewer kept in touch with his guys and when Jackson announced he was opening up his options as a graduate student Brewer gave him a call. Jackson told Jody Demling the story:

“When Brew came (to Louisville), I had talked to some other schools but he was finally like, ‘You should just come here and play for me’,” Jackson recalled. “I was all for it just because I love playing for that guy. He’s always had my back and it was kind of a no brainer once he showed up (at Louisville).”

When healthy, Jackson produced, even behind future NFL guys like Austin Proehl. In 2016 Jackson played in all 13 games and caught 17 balls for 186yds and 4 TDs. In 2017 Jackson was expected to be a big target again out of the slot but was injured after only 3 games (He still had 7rec/97yds/ 2 TDs in only a quarter of the season). 2018 saw a bit of a limited role (16rec/118yds/2TD in 11 games) and this offseason new head coach Mack Brown appeared to be going in a different direction, leading Jackson to start looking at other alternatives.

I love Tutu Atwell as much as the next guy, and he will undoubtedly be the main guy coming out of the slot for the Cards this year, but don’t be shocked at all to see former UNC team caption Jackson earn a good portion of playing time in 2019 at either wide out and/or on special teams.

Sweet Tweet: No twitter for T Jack that I could find so let’s slip in another episode of the series that is sweeping the nation…

Season 1, Episode 10 of “Hi, My Name is…”

Hi, My Name Is: Dale Jones

I grew up in: Cleveland, TN

I played football: Tennessee (Linebacker)

I previously coached at: Appalachian State (Co-Defensive Coordinator/Inside Linebackers)

I now coach the: Inside Linebackers

Jones has one daughter.

Fun Fact: Jones spent 23 seasons at Appalachian State coaching the defensive side of the football. His talent/knowledge allowed him to earn a promotion to Co-defensive coordinator in 2018. App State finished 4th nationally in scoring defense last year, 5th in passing defense, and 6th in total defense. His coaching on that side of the ball, along with Bryan Brown, produced extremely positive results in year one.

CardinalStrong says: Jones is an experienced coach but also a player who did it at the highest level. Jones was a starter for UT back in the 80’s when they were churning out championship caliber teams on a nearly annual basis. Jones was an All-American at UT and helped lead them to a SEC title in 1985. He can speak truths to these guys because he has been there. With Jones and Dennison coaching up the linebackers, and the depth that group has, I would be stunned to not see a drastic improvement from that unit. I’ve seen a few video clips from the football account that show the intensity of Jones while he coaches, having him bring that energy and his familiarity with the defense he will be a nice bonus to this staff. Another guy who would likely have been a top candidate in replacing Satterfield at App State but decided to ultimately make the leap to a Power 5 program with “Satt And The Boys” (Somebody put that on a t-shirt).