WR John Jackson III officially added to USC football roster

PASADENA, CA - JANUARY 02: Wide receiver Deontay Burnett
PASADENA, CA - JANUARY 02: Wide receiver Deontay Burnett /

Wide receiver John Jackson III joined the USC football roster on Monday, giving the Trojans a needed reinforcement in the slot.

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It’s been over a year since his commitment to USC football as a member of the class of 2018, but John Jackson III is finally, officially on the Trojan roster.

The three-star wide receiver out of Serra committed to USC last year but spent the fall at a junior college while taking a grayshirt.

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What’s a grayshirt? It’s the process of delaying enrollment instead of joining a program right after high school. Jackson III’s scholarship will now count as part of the class of 2019.

At 6-foot-1, 180 pounds, he was ranked 563rd nationally and 94th among wide receivers in 2018, per the 247Sports composite. He had 63 receptions for 573 yards and two touchdowns as a senior, per Max Preps.

His arrival comes just in time to give USC some much-needed depth at wide receiver.

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Though the Trojans are welcoming an additional three wide receiver prospects over the summer, they are short on bodies at the position going into Spring Camp, particularly in the slot.

Slot receivers Trevon Sidney and Velus Jones Jr. have both opted to transfer away from the program, leaving USC with few options at the position. Keyshawn “Pie” Young is also listed among USC’s “squadmen lost.”

Amon-Ra St. Brown is certainly locked into a starting role, but he is the only slot receiver returning. Fall enrollees Kyle Ford, Drake London and Munir McClain all figure to take spots on the outside.

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Since new offensive coordinator Graham Harrell regularly deploys four and five wide receiver sets, any boost to slot depth will help.

It also means Jackson will have a major opportunity on his hands. A strong enough impression this offseason could net him regular playing time as a freshman.

The first opportunity to impress will come on Tuesday, when USC opens Spring Camp on Howard Jones Field.

Jackson is the son of former Trojan great John Jackson, who ranks 12th on USC’s all time pass catching list with 163 receptions for 2,379 yards and 17 touchdowns. In recent years, he has served as an analyst on USC’s local radio game broadcasts as well as Trojans Live.