For somebody who shouldn’t be utterly snug within the highlight, Lamar Jackson has come to embrace all of it: the speeches, the truckload of trophies, even all these tweets about his outfits.
However after every week of award exhibits, interviews and photograph alternatives, the Louisville quarterback simply needs to get again to the place that made him probably the most adorned school soccer participant of the yr.
“It seems like I have never performed soccer in a yr, I have been away so lengthy,” Jackson stated. “I can not wait to get again on the market, placed on these pads and grind.”
Jackson returns to Louisville as The Related Press school soccer Participant of the Yr, the newest addition to the sophomore’s haul of postseason awards.
The youngest Heisman Trophy winner acquired forty two of sixty one first-place votes from AP’s panel of media voters. Jackson acquired 153 factors general, adopted by Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson (seventy three) and Alabama defensive lineman Jonathan Allen (32). Watson acquired 10 first-place votes and Allen three.
Jackson’s runaway choice appeared becoming in a season by which he outraced defenders on his option to a powerful assortment of highlights and hardware.
The 19-yr-previous opened the season by accounting for a faculty-document eight touchdowns towards Charlotte. Then he had a flashy aim-line hurdle over a Syracuse defender the subsequent week whereas rolling to an ACC-document 610 yards. He showcased his enchancment within the pocket and fast, nimble footwork throughout a 5-TD outburst towards Florida State in a press release win for this system.
“His potential to image performs is one thing that he actually labored on and obtained higher at,” Louisville coach Bobby Petrino stated. “One of many issues that’s actually neat was how he turned a pacesetter in the course of the season.
“I can keep in mind a few occasions in apply the place he would take a look at me and go, ‘He was brief on that route.’ And I might say ‘Sure, sure he was.’ And I might go forward to the receiver to right him and Lamar goes, ‘That is OK, Coach. I received him.'”
The 6-foot-three, 205-pound Jackson has handed for three,390 yards with 30 touchdowns and rushed for a faculty-document 1,538 and 21 scores. His mixed TD complete broke Watson’s Atlantic Coast Convention document of forty seven set final season, and he established single-season convention dashing marks for yardage and TDs by a QB.
After incomes ACC honors from media and coaches because the league’s prime participant, Jackson final week gained the Maxwell and Walter Camp awards. He is nonetheless making an attempt to get his thoughts across the deluge of particular person accolades and a spotlight — particularly being a Heisman winner.
Whereas he’ll inform anybody who listens that his intention when he arrived at Louisville was serving to the Cardinals win video games and championships, the highlight and expectations will develop subsequent season.
Jackson has the prospect to develop into simply the second repeat Heisman winner and first since Ohio State’s Archie Griffin (1974 and ‘seventy five). His objective stays main Louisville into championship playoff rivalry after the No. 15 Cardinals (9-three) fell brief this fall.
“The eye has been like that each one yr, and I simply cannot exit as a lot,” stated Jackson, who will lead Louisville towards No. 19 LSU (7-four) on Dec. 31 within the Citrus Bowl. “This simply motivates me to raise my recreation.”
Jackson, from Pompano Seashore, Florida, is keen to renew bowl preparations for the sport in his house state after every week of media appearances and award exhibits in Atlanta and New York — the place his style decisions took over social media.
His outfit for his Heisman coronation was a purple velvet jacket with black lapels, black bow tie and black suede loafers adorned with menacing yellow eyes, which he says represented his fierce look from inside his helmet.
Initially reluctant to put on the footwear, Jackson relented and now laughs concerning the consideration they generated.
“I confirmed my teammates the image of the footwear they usually stated, ‘You gotta get them,'” Jackson stated. “I used to be like, ‘I do not need to put on them,’ and we debated about it and talked about it, and it simply went from there. It is enjoyable.”
Onerous to think about this spectacular whirlwind can be something aside from enjoyable, particularly contemplating Jackson might do it once more on the ripe previous age of 20.
AP School Soccer Author Ralph D. Russo in New York contributed to this report.