Former UGA signee Toby Jackson returns to Georgia

Griffin defensive end Toby Jackson has lived in Chatham, Va., and Corsicana, Texas, since signing with Georgia in 2008. He'll be in Milledgeville on Saturday. (AJC Photo)

Griffin defensive end Toby Jackson has lived in Chatham, Va., and Corsicana, Texas, since signing with Georgia in 2008. He'll be in Milledgeville on Saturday and that may be as close as he gets to Athens. (AJC Photo)

Toby Jackson is going to show up at Georgia Military College after all.

The highly-touted defensive end from Griffin was expected to be playing there this fall. The plan was for Jackson — a 2008 Georgia signee — to enroll at the Milledgeville military school/junior college after he failed to meet entrance requirements during a stint at Hargrave Military Academy last winter.

But after several conversations with GMC AD and head football coach Bert Williams about what all he needed to do to come to GMC, Jackson pulled a reverse and ended up at Navarro College in Corsicana, Texas.

As fate would have it, Navarro plays at GMC this Saturday.

“They wanted him here,” Williams said of the Bulldogs. “Toby and I talked a few times about what he needed to do and he was like, ‘OK’ and ‘yes sir.’ Then, after I tell him there should be no problems, all of the sudden you can’t get him on the phone.”

Neither could I. A message for left Jackson and his coach at Navarro, Nick Bobeck, was not returned Thursday. But, in their defense, they were looking at a 15-hour-or-so bus ride to Milledgeville overnight. So they might’ve been a little busy.

In the last/best interview I could find, Jackson told Anthony Dasher of last January he simply didn’t want to do the military school thing again. It has also been speculated that competing schools recruiting Jackson may have placed him at the small Texas college. Alabama was on him heavy as well as some other SEC and Big 12 schools. In any case, Jackson declared his recruitment “reopened” after getting to Navarro.

Williams insists he is not the least bit bitter. Such comings and goings are commonplace in the nomadic world that is junior college football.

“I’m not going to lose any sleep over it,” he said. “We’ve got plenty of good players here. He wasn’t going to do what he needed to do if he didn’t want to be here.”

Still, Williams prefers when players are straight up with him. Former Georgia Tech defensive back Kamaron Riley was also supposed to enroll at GMC after running into some academic trouble at The Institue but had a last-second change of heart. “At least he called and said, ‘I don’t know if I want to do the military thing,” Williams said with a laugh. “I can respect that.”

Riley ended up at Independence (Kan.) Community College.

Those little sidebars aside, it should be a doosie of a game Saturday in Milledgeville. Navarro (1-0) is ranked No. 7 in the NJCAA poll while GMC (1-0) is No. 8 following a 35-33 upset win at No. 3-ranked Ellsworth (Iowa) last weekend.

Williams got to see a lot of Griffin while studying Navarro’s game tape this past week.

“He looks pretty good,” Williams said. “They started him at end and then moved him to 3-technique (tackle) in the second half,” Williams said. “He’s a good player. The one thing he’s great with is his hands. He’s got good, quick, strong hands. He’s going to be a guy we have to do a good job on.”

In the meantime, at least Williams got one Jackson to Milledgeville. Kantorius “Scoot” Jackson, Toby’s little brother, plays strong safety for GMC.

A few more notes out of the JUCO ranks:

Hamilton excels at GMC

Safety Jakar Hamilton is currently the only player GMC Bulldog set to become a Georgia Bulldog. The 6-foot-2, 205-pound sophomore committed in July and plans to enroll at UGA in January.

Meanwhile, he had a good first game for his current team. Williams said Hamilton had five tackles and returned an interception 50 yards for a touchdown in last Saturday’s game.

Making GMC proud

Williams, who got his start in coaching as a graduate assistant at Georgia in the early 1990s, spoke like a proud papa while watching the South Carolina-N.C. State game Thursday night. There were six GMC graduates in that game. Among them was former Georgia Bulldog Michael Lemon, a North Carolina State defensive end who picked off a pass in the second half. Wolfpack DT Leroy Burgess also went to GMC. The Gamecocks had four GMC alums: LB Josh Dickerson (Kingsland), OG Steven Singleton (Buford), LB Tony Slaughter (Madison, Fla.) and OT Rokevious Watkins (Fairburn).

18 comments Add your comment


September 4th, 2009
7:21 am

Really looking forward to Jakar Hamilton joining the Dawgs in January. Congrats to all of the exGMC players and expecially M Lemon, on their game Thrusday.


Vick=Dog killing thug

September 4th, 2009
7:40 am

Good article…. Hope this kid does well and gets into a big time program.

Bulldawgs tomorrow ….. I thought the gamecocks looked soft last night… Next weekend should be a breather.


September 4th, 2009
8:00 am

Nice to see these guys sticking it out and staying in school. It’s so easy to criticize them for not making the grades the first time through, although most people here would have a difficult time studying and playing a sport.


September 4th, 2009
8:09 am

Why is the guy standing in a broken airplane? Is that a metaphor for not knowing where you are supposed to be?

Duke Yellowjacket

September 4th, 2009
9:10 am

Frankly, GMC and UGA are both better off without Jackson – a spineless, million dollar athlete with a ten cent brain.

Milledgeville Dawg

September 4th, 2009
10:03 am

GMC and Milledgeville are lucky to have Coach Williams. I am sure over the years he has been offered jobs at other colleges. He not only gives these young men the opportunity of playing football at a higher level but also help them mature.

[...] Former UGA signee Toby Jackson returns to Georgia [...]

Chip Towers

September 4th, 2009
10:20 am

chazzo: not exactly sure why the pose among scrapped airplanes but this was the photo we shot in late-summer 2007 when Jackson was named an AJC Super 11. Very artsy, isn’t it?


September 4th, 2009
10:26 am

Toby Jackson will end up at Bama or Tennessee where, shall we say, academic requirements are a bit looser. Jakar Hamilton will be at UGA and he was never an academic problem to start with. He is a potential startr for UGA in 2010.


September 4th, 2009
10:56 am

Wow this guy must be a good athlete he made the Super 11, but he could’nt make entrance requirments. I studied and played three sports and it is hard. Chip I read an article awhile back about Michael Thornton of Stephenson being upset because he was SNUBBED by the Super 11, I did some checking and he has a 3.0 CORE GPA and he is ranked Number 2 in State at Defensive Tackle on all the sports sites. I also saw that last year their were about five guys who made the Super 11 that had trouble in School. Now my question is. Who picks the Super 11 and why is the Super 11 so Super when we could care less about how these KIDS due in class. Maybe Thornton was right he has thirty Offers all from D-1 Schools, why should we care about the AJC and the covetted SUPER 11.AJC should get some class and atleast make the grades as important as touchdowns,yards,tackles,or interceptions.

It was fitting...

September 4th, 2009
11:37 am

That michael lemon got a pick on a night more remembered for a facial beating. what a chode salad sandwich.

Chip Towers

September 4th, 2009
12:40 pm

Classy: The Super 11 is chosen by our resident high school experts. And, no, I don’t believe academics are one of the considerations. Perhaps they should be. The reality is that an individual’s academic standing is protected by the federal law, FERPA. But I’ll forward your suggestions for consideration.


September 4th, 2009
2:19 pm

he looks great in that photo!!!

Mike willis

September 4th, 2009
6:27 pm

Well coach Toby at Griffin he is not the bad guy the way it seems he will do well

Not Disappointed!

September 4th, 2009
10:22 pm

Good luck man!

Ramblin Wreck!!!

I Hunt Rabid Dogs

September 5th, 2009
8:39 am

Today is the last day UGA stays unbeaten in 2009!!!


September 5th, 2009
8:52 am

the airplane pose – “Superman” survives the crash and says “where’s my posse?”


September 6th, 2009
8:34 am

Toby had a great game against GMC with two sacks and nine tackles. GMC feared him, and another thing, you people that write these negitive about these young people should get the facts first.