An Interview with Branden Jackson

Submitted by TomVH on May 24th, 2010 at 1:31 PM

[Editor's note: Tom's put out a torrent of  content about this weekend's BBQ at the Big House. Other items in you may be interested in:

  • MD DT Darian Cooper didn't name any leaders following the trip but did say Michigan helped themselves: "They weren't trying to hype anything, and I really liked that. We just got to sit back and talk about life and not all football, which was great."
  • FL RB Demetrius Hart did not make it in due to the expense of two trips to Michigan back-to-back. "Nothing has changed" as far as the Harts' opinion of M.
  • Michigan has offered three additional kids in Ohio: DE Austin Traylor, TE Nick Vannett, and C Ryan Kelly. Traylor says he will visit; the interest levels of the other guys is unknown. Vannett is reputed an OSU lock.

Now on with this particular show.]

One of the prospects in attendance at this past weekend's BBQ was McKeesport linebacker Branden Jackson. Branden is a 6-foot-5, 220-pound middle linebacker for his team who runs a 4.5-4.6 forty. Here's what he had to say about the trip, and his versatility.

TOM: What did you know about Michigan before this trip? Why did you have interest?

BRANDEN: I just knew that Michigan was always good. They have a good track record, a huge alumni base, and they have those nice helmets. I liked some of the players growing up, and I also knew they had the biggest stadium, but that was about it.

TOM: So what were you expecting out of this kind of visit?

BRANDEN: I was really just expecting to get a feel for the school, the players, and the environment. I wanted to see if I could fit in, and I got exactly that. Exactly what I thought I would.

TOM: What about the environment, or atmosphere, stood out to you?

BRANDEN: The campus was really nice. I knew it would be, but it was really nice. Once I got around some of the players, too, I knew I wouldn't be left out. Everyone was just real nice, and made you feel comfortable. They weren't hyping anything, they were just being real about what they go through. I hung out with Tate Forcier, and Roy Roundtree a little bit. Roy's hilarious, he was cracking jokes the whole time. I talked a little with Stephen Hopkins, too. It was good to hear from someone that just committed, and just got up there.

TOM: Did you get to have as much fun with any of the coaches?

BRANDEN: Yeah, coach Gib [Gibson]. Since I met him, he's been real cool. He's always been down to earth with me, and he's in to modern things, too. He's not too old school, and I like that. I actually talked to the defensive coordinator, too. He was a little older, so I didn't know how much we'd have in common, but he was real cool, too. I was surprised, he knew a lot about some modern things.

TOM: What was the conversation like between the coaches?

BRANDEN: We were just talking about the things I'd get out of Michigan. The education, how big the alumni base is, and how that can help with jobs. We talked about the defense, and if I came there, I would play outside linebacker. They like quick, aggressive, and athletic linebackers. We also talked about how the head coach wants to offer kids that will add to the family atmosphere, and help create a bigger family, which was cool.

TOM: Does the outside linebacker spot fit you? Are you comfortable with that?

BRANDEN: I'm 6-foot-5, and 220-pounds, but if you look at me, I don't look like I weigh that much. I have really good speed, and I feel like I'm smaller for the middle spot, so the outside is probably better for me. I actually used to play safety, but we were short on linebackers, so I had to play in the middle. I'm aggressive, though. I like to come off the edge, even though I'm in the middle, I cover tight ends all the time in our defense. I'm pretty versatile; I could really be anywhere on the field. The last time I ran the forty was around a year ago, and it was a 4.5 something.

TOM: I know you wanted your teammate, Delvon Simmons, to come with you, too. He didn't make it?

BRANDEN: No, he couldn't make it, but I'm going to tell him everything about it. He'll definitely want to come back up with me in the summer. We talk about going to the same school all the time. I say if it happens, it happens, but he says it's definitely going to happen. I don't really know yet. It's too early for me to narrow things down, until I take more visits. Michigan is definitely up there, but there's no list, yet.



May 24th, 2010 at 1:11 PM ^

"I was surprised, he knew a lot about some modern things."  Really?  Do 18 year old kids really think Greg Robinson is that old?  Or is someone telling kids that he is out of touch? 


May 24th, 2010 at 2:07 PM ^

But, I think Tom is right.  To a 17-year-old anyone who has white hair is viewed as old and sholud be handing out Werther's Originals and spouting stories about "the good 'ol days".  No harm intended - that's just the way some youngins see it. 

Thanks for the info, Tom.  Sounds like a pretty cool kid. 

Blue in Seattle

May 24th, 2010 at 1:15 PM ^

I'm intrigued at what today's high school players think of when they say, "modern things"

and I love this quote,

"I actually talked to the defensive coordinator, too. He was a little older, so I didn't know how much we'd have in common, but he was real cool, too. I was surprised, he knew a lot about some modern things."

Is this just surprise that Coach Robinson knows how to Twitter? or something more footbally like?

in any case, loved the interview and the mention of growing the "family atmosphere".



May 24th, 2010 at 3:10 PM ^

Toilet paper? That funny thing you carry in your pocket that you talk into? The invisible stuff that zaps you when you stick a knife into those funny little slots in the wall?


May 24th, 2010 at 4:30 PM ^

He was overheard reciting this song to the recruits at the BBQ

Cellphones with bluetooth and internet access
John Madden football with virtual practice
My guitar hero without any strings
These are a few of the modernest things

Blueray by Sony and GPS handsets
Designer dogbreeds that make handsome housepets
Shnoodles and Puggles and Cojacks with springs
These are a few of the modernest things

LCD TVs with voice activation
Driving by Garmin when I'm on vacation
Shopping online for the shiniest bling
These are a few of the modernest things

When my hair turns
White as snowflakes
And my bones grow cold
I simply remember the modernest things
And then I don't feel, soooo old.


He then procured a lazer cat from inside the guitar he was playing and started wasting Jim Tressel in effigy.