Boys Prep of the Week: J.C. Jackson, Immokalee football

Dania Maxwell/Staff
Immokalee's JC Jackson makes a touchdown in the final quarter of the playoff game against Lake Wales on Friday, November 30, 2012 at Immokalee High School. Final score was 38 to 21 with Immokalee in the lead.

Photo by DANIA MAXWELL // Buy this photo

Dania Maxwell/Staff Immokalee's JC Jackson makes a touchdown in the final quarter of the playoff game against Lake Wales on Friday, November 30, 2012 at Immokalee High School. Final score was 38 to 21 with Immokalee in the lead.

Every time Immokalee's J.C. Jackson touches the football, either as a receiver or a kick returner, there is a good chance something special is about to happen.

But the soft-spoken junior who has already committed to Florida State University has taken it to a whole different level in the postseason.

"When he is on his game, he has another gear," Indians coach Jerrod Ackley said of his star receiver. "What he has done is nothing new for us in the program ... but this postseason he's put it all together."

Jackson, a Florida State commit, had another big game against Lake Wales in the 5A regional title game in which he finished with 172 yards and two touchdowns — both over 60 yards — in the 38-21 victory for Immokalee. Ackley called Jackson's performance the "biggest game he has ever played."

Jackson and the Indians scored quickly against the Highlanders. On the first offensive play for Immokalee, Jackson connected on an 80-yard flea-flicker pass play from running back D'Ernest Johnson.

Jackson later added a 65-yard touchdown on a more orthodox screen pass. Jackson used his explosive breakaway speed to bolt down the sidelines for the score.

It is that explosive speed and 'other gear' that has pushed Jackson into the realm of elite offensive players in Collier County.

"He is tremendously blessed athletically," said Ackley, who likened Jackson's skill set to former South Fort Myers standout receiver Sammy Watkins. "J.C. has the ability to go from a standing start to full speed quicker than anyone I've ever coached.

"J.C. hasn't even begun to reach his potential. I don't know the limit on what he could do or if there is even a limit."

OTHERS CONSIDERED:

Jonah Bueltel, First Baptist football — Had a team-best 97 rushing yards and also threw for a touchdown in a 27-13 loss to Dade Christian in the 2A semifinals.

D'Ernest Johnson, Immokalee football — Ran for 81 yards and threw an 80-yard touchdown pass in the regional final, a 38-21 win over Lake Wales.

Termaine McClendon, Lely wrestling — Pinned all seven of his opponents to win the 170-pound division at FoxBoro Duals and was named outstanding wrestler of the upper weights.

Manny Morgan, Naples football — Ran 31 times for 239 yards and a touchdown in a 41-14 victory over Daytona Beach-Mainland in the regional championship.

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