Tennessee already has a couple prospects committed to them in their 2021 class who were once pledged to the Florida Gators. Now another former Gator commit has the Vols in consideration in his recruitment moving forward.
Dink Jackson, a four-star athlete who plays for Eau Gallie High School in Melbourne, Florida, tweeted out his list of top 10 teams on Tuesday, and Tennessee was among the handful of SEC schools included. The Vols joined Auburn, South Carolina, Kentucky, Ole Miss, USC, Miami, Florida State, West Virginia, and Louisville in Jackson’s top 10. Notably, Florida was not listed.
Top 🔟….. pic.twitter.com/S94PHDufOu
— Dink9️⃣🦍 (@dink_jackson) May 12, 2020
According to the 247Sports Composite rankings, Jackson is the No. 266 overall prospect, 19th-best athlete, and No. 39 recruit in the state of Florida in the 2021 cycle. The 6-foot-2, 185-pound prospect holds offers from nearly three dozen programs across the country.
Jackson committed to Florida on February 13, 2019 but announced his decommitment from the Gators three months later on May 10th. The Vols extended an offer to him on January 23rd, and he has a strong relationship with UT’s coaches despite not visiting Knoxville yet.
The speedy, do-it-all athlete has been timed running the 100 meters in 11.04 seconds, and that speed translates to the football field. He lines up at multiple positions on both defense and offense for Eau Gallie, but it’s likely that he’ll play defensive back in college. The Vols are recruiting him as a potential STAR corner player. Jackson is also capable of rushing off the edge.
On defense, Jackson has really good closing speed and is capable of dishing out some violent hits. He has exceptional lateral movement and can cover the whole field thanks to his speed. Offensively, that explosiveness makes him a threat to score when he gets the ball in his hands, and he’s nearly impossible to catch once he’s in the open field.
As a junior, Jackson totaled 80 tackles, 26 tackles for loss, eight sacks, an interception, two passes defended, four forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries, and three blocked punts on defense while totaling 219 rushing yards and four scores on 35 carries and 246 receiving yards and four touchdowns on 22 receptions according to MaxPreps.
Two of Tennessee’s highest-rated commits in their 2021 class — five-star Terrence Lewis and four-star Kamar Wilcoxson — were once committed to Florida just like Jackson. But both Lewis and Wilcoxson eventually opened their recruitment back up — twice in Wilcoxson’s case — and both are now committed to the Vols.
The Vols currently have 21 prospects committed to them in their 2021 class, a class that ranks No. 2 nationally and No. 1 in the SEC. Both Lewis and Wilcoxson are two of the four recruits from Florida currently committed to UT. Three-star defensive back De’Shawn Rucker and three-star defensive end Darrell Jackson are the other two.