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Who Does Gators CB Commit Ja'Keem Jackson Remind Corey Raymond Of?

AllGators
AllGators
 2022-07-29

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Gators defensive back commit Ja’Keem Jackson talks fit in Florida defense and draws fitting player comparison from cornerbacks coach Corey Raymond.

Photo: Ja’Keem Jackson; Credit: Zach Goodall

The expected continuation of an unrivaled development history.

One of the most prolific coaches in college football continues to make splashes on the recruiting trail, even with the change of scenery from Baton Rouge to Gainesville this offseason.

Cornerbacks coach Corey Raymond made a monumental move in the midst of the coaching turnover at both Florida and LSU this offseason. Leaving the program he had become a mainstay with for the past decade — namely due to his construction and longevity of a production factory at his position for the Tigers, landing top recruits before molding their skillsets to become first round NFL talents — Raymond immediately brought a sliver of legitimacy to the new staff as it assumed control at the University of Florida.

Raymond has lived up to that billing in the ensuing months, drawing considerable interest from nearly every defensive back he contacts and stacking his room with high-level talent already.

The talent in the 2023 culminated with the Gators landing highly touted defensive back Ja’Keem Jackson on Thursday. He shared his intrigue to learn under Raymond’s tutelage with the hope to become one of the names on the cornerback coach’s illustrious list of NFL stars.

“Yeah, that's part of [it], development, and I feel like he's a big factor in development,” Jackson told AllGators following his commitment. “So, I feel like he could develop me to be a first-rounder.”

Possessing desirable length, speed and ball skills, the former wide receiver turned cornerback ago quickly rose up recruitment boards as a prospect this spring. He played in just three games as a cornerback, but has flashed the traits that slate him for potential stardom at the next level.

He feels he fits perfectly in the press-heavy Florida system to grow to meet those expectations.

How will Raymond elevate him to that status? By drawing wisdom from his many successes of the past.

Having the answers to nearly any question that could be thrown at him due to the laundry list of athletes to learn under his wing to excel in their collegiate and professional careers, Raymond is willing to draw parallels to his former athletes.

Obviously, everyone isn’t the same, and comparisons of play style don’t always equate to production, but the luxury of being able to share player similarities with a young talent before revealing that you coached that player adds to the aforementioned legitimacy in his recruitment pitch.

Jackson's comparison is to an All-Pro NFL cornerback and former LSU star under Raymond.

“Yeah, he compared me to Tre'Davious White , but I'm a little taller,” Jackson said. “He said I play just like him."

Raymond looks to continue his impressive track record of development with the gifted, but still raw, cover corner. Jackson looks for the same.

“He's just going to perfect my craft, get my techniques down pat, my press-man, off man, tackling, shedding blocks. He's just a good developmental coach."

Jackson is planning to sign to the Gators in December and is in the process of become eligible for an early enrollment. If he does get on campus sooner rather than later, Raymond can begin the process of sculpting a relatively moldable skillset for the talented player who is still relatively new to the position.

Turning into anything like White as a player, mixing the play style comparison with similar production, gives Florida’s secondary a great chance to re-establish the dominance it experienced in the mid-2010s and prior.

That is, and will always be, the goal with Raymond in charge of the cornerback play.

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