VYPE U: Four-star recruit Donovan Jackson reflects on picking Ohio State
Four-star offensive lineman Donovan Jackson's path to Ohio State might not be what most would consider normal.
On decision day,Jackson displayed the hats of Stanford, Texas, Texas A&M, Georgia and Ohio State as his final five. This however, was mainly for theatrics.
While most will settle on a school during the fall of their senior season, Jackson made up his mind early on during a cool November day his junior year. That day he was on hand to watch Ohio State take on Big 10 Conference-rival Penn State.
"Seeing those guys in the locker room and the bond they have for each other is rare to see and was something I wanted to be a part of," Jackson said.
Keeping it quiet, Jackson committed during the Thanksgiving break without hesitation. Being only a junior there wasn't any school like "The" Ohio State.
"I felt there was no need to lead other teams on when I knew that I wanted to be a Buckeye," Jackson said.
What made the decision so clear for him?
With more than 20-plus universities going after him, he had more than a handful of great choices coming his way. When it came to making the perfect choice Jackson says, "I had my coaches and family members in my ear about where they wanted me to go, but ultimately it was my decision to choose Ohio State."
This decision came down to wanting to go to a school that was more than football; something that "offered things like an alumni network and an atmosphere to help me make the transition from high school to college easier," Jackson recalls.
One of the defining moments of the recruiting process that sticks with him was "having a special moment with the entire OSU football team when they all came and introduced themselves to me and my family," Jackson said.
Speaking to Jackson for a bit he emphasized family values consistently. However, this, in the end, did not stop the Texas native from pursuing colleges outside of the state.
"It wasn't exactly a big factor," Jackson said. "I just wanted to be comfortable at the university that I chose."
Donovan is one of the top prospects of the class of 2021 and for a school like Episcopal, another athlete in recent years to have potential of reaching the NFL like alumni including Marvin Wilson (Florida State), Walker Little (Stanford) and Jaylen Waddle (Alabama).