Albany State University sprinter/jumper and Hinesville native Chris Jackson has been named an All American for his performances during the 2019 NCAA Division II Outdoor Track & Field season.
The announcement was made by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) on May 28, following the conclusion of the NCAA Division II Outdoor Track & Field Championships which were held May 23-25 in Kingsville, Texas.
Jackson earned the honor by being a member of the Albany State men's 4x100m relay team where he runs the second leg. The Rams relay team were dubbed second team All American status. Second-team selections were given to those athlete who finished in spots 9-12th in individual events. Ninth and tenth-place relay teams also earned the distinction.
Albany State's 4x100m relay squad had a time of 41.22 in the Division II Outdoor Track & Field Championships, to finish 10th overall.
When asked has being named an All American sunk it yet and what will he do to improve for his senior year, Jackson replied "Yes, it has sunk in and next year I will focus more on track a little more and take it a little more serious than last year."
Jackson was named also named to the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SIAC) Men's Outdoor Track and Field All-Conference Second Team in the 100m event. Jackson finished second at the SIAC Outdoor Track and Field Championships in the 100m with a time of 10.54.
Jackson said it felt good to make the all-conference team this year and is looking forward to his senior year. “It feels great to represent my team at this level and I can’t wait to do it again.”
During the 2019 outdoor track & field season, Jackson competed in the 100m, 200m, high jump, long jump and the 4x100m relay team.
The result was the junior winning 12 events, placing second in four events and coming in third in five events.
His specialty was the 100m race where he crossed the finish line first at the Alice Coachman Relays, Emory Invitational, FAMU Relays, Adonica Ferguson Classic and the Cougar Invitational. Jackson also won the 100m race at the Emory Indoor Invitational.
At the SIAC Championships in April, Jackson and his 4x100m relay teammates won their event with a time of 41.06 while individually he came in second in the 100m, third in the 200m, eighth in the high jump and 18th in the long jump.
His best time in the 100m race came as a freshman back in 2017 when he posted a run of 10.41. Also during his freshman year, he had personal best performances in the 200m race at the SIAC Outdoor Championships with a time of 21.31 while having a time of 58.10 in the 400m race while at the Savannah State EyeOpener Meet.
As a sophomore, Jackson had outstanding performances in the long jump and high jump. He had a personal best of 6.91m in the long jump at the Emory Classic and at the Savannah State Relays had a leap of 1.85m in the high jump.
The Health and Human Performance major states that he enjoys attending the Southwest Georgia based Historically Black University as well as being a part of the track & field team. "I enjoy the comfort of being on a great track team and the environment at Albany State is great and you get to meet a lot of new people."
Jackson, who one day hopes to run in the Olympics, said that participating in the Bradwell Institute track program helped prepare him for ASU. "It prepared me mentally and emotionally. Once I stepped foot on Albany State, I knew it was all about business."
Bradwell track & field coach DeAndre' Davis recalls when he convinced Jackson to come out for the track team. "Chris ran track for me for two years. I found him on the basketball court. When I saw him I convinced him to come out. When he came out, he ran the hurdles and tried the long and triple jumps. As you can see, none of them worked out for him. I asked him one day can he beat one of our sprinters. His response was, "He would never beat me in anything." From that moment on, he was our sprinter."
Davis says that Jackson was a hard worker while running for the Tigers.
"His work ethic was unmatched. He worked extremely hard every day. Chris was one to never complain. No matter the workout, he always gave you 100 percent. I wish I had more like him. He became one of the most feared sprinters in the state."
Davis added that Jackson set school records in the 100m and 200m races while at BI but both were broken this year. As a junior, Jackson placed seventh in the 100m at the AAAAAA state championships. During his senior season, Jackson improved to finish fourth in the state in the 100m, second in the 200m and fourth in the high jump.
Davis is proud of his former student and thinks the sky is the limit for him. "It makes me feel great to have an athlete be called an All-American. He is in the top three of my sprinters all-time. He would always say that he wished that he came out his freshman and sophomore years."
The 21-year old son of JD and Yteshia Jackson has some advice for high school athletes looking to run on the college level. "Don't come to college with a high school mentality. Be ready to work and learn a lot of new techniques and proper methods of running."