Adam Grosbard (OC Register) — Prior to the 2019 season, no one was sure when USC offensive lineman Austin Jackson would be ready to play. He’d donated bone marrow to his younger sister over the summer and was careful as he worked himself back into football shape.
But Jackson returned in time for the season opener, and on Wednesday his USC journey came to a close as the left tackle announced he would forgo his senior season to enter the NFL Draft.
Jackson made the decision official with an announcement on Twitter.
“To the amazing Trojan alumni and friends that I have met on my journey these past three years, I want tot hank you for being a wonderful part of my college memories,” Jackson wrote. “The bond of the Trojan Family is for life!”
Jackson started all 13 games for USC at left tackle as a junior, earning first-team All-Pac-12 honors for his efforts. It was Jackson’s second season manning the blind side, as he started all 12 games as a sophomore, too, after playing in 14 games as a true freshman out of North Canyon High in Phoenix.
The 6-foot-6, 310-pound Jackson has become a popular choice to be a first-round pick in mock drafts lately, going as high as No. 14 in some.
Jackson thanked his family for their support in his goodbye post to USC, as well as head coach Clay Helton and his teammates.
“Coach Helton, thank you for your leadership and your constant support of me and family both on and off the field. USC has truly been a (sic) such a special place to call home for the last three years,” Jackson wrote. “Thank you to my boys on this team. I couldn’t imagine a better group to have played with.”
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