Xavier Jackson, 13, is a basketball player with aspirations of making it to the NBA.
Currently playing for the junior varsity squad of the First Presbyterian Christian Academy Highlanders, the high honor roll student said he has plans for college first.
"I want to go to Xavier or UNC," he said. "After that I want to go to the NBA and play for the Atlanta Hawks. I want to help them win and get a title. They don’t have that many championships."
The seventh-grader is also considered a top player for the St. James Coastal Crew Rebels. This season, he will join the 14U squad. He picked up his first basketball at the tender age of 4. He said he likes shooting from the outside.
"We are really excited about Xavier Jackson, Ernie Walthour of the Coastal Crew Rebels said. "He is setting the stage for our younger players. They look up to him and want to follow his lead. He’s an excellent basketball player, as well and we are really happy to have him on our roster and we will be watching him for the next few years and help him get through high school and later to college."
"I love to score, shoot and I love close games," the young guard said.
FPCA junior varsity head coach David Linderman said Jackson follows the example of current FPCA players like Joey Bell.
"He is in the gym constantly and he thinks he is a little Joey Bell," he said. "He tries to copy Bell’s style of shooting."
Linderman said the youngster is humble and eager to learn.
"He’s very coachable and is learning to be a point guard," he said. "He is a scorer right now and will be a scoring point guard, but he also needs to learn to be a passing point guard. He carried us a couple of games with a couple of three-pointers and hit a couple of big shots in the corner. When we played Lewis Frasier, he hit the three-pointer that put us in a position to pull away and take the game. He never struggled all season. If he stays humble he can do whatever he wants to do."
Walthour said the young man has already caught the attention of several schools.
"He has spoken with college coaches already," Walthour said. "He spoke with the coaches of Tennessee, Jacksonville and Georgia College and he tells them he intends to play college basketball so they should not forget about him."
In college Jackson said he wants to study business management and one day own his own business.
As the Highlander varsity players chase their second state title, Jackson said he plans to help FPCA earn a state ring once he makes the varsity squad.
He will be eligible for the squad next season.