NEW YORK — Josh Jackson knows what he is doing.
Well, most likely does. The Iowa junior cornerback won’t say if he is forgoing his senior season for the NFL draft, but he did reveal the decision is essentially made.
“I kind of have my mind made up,” Jackson said, “but it’s just about being patient and just waiting to go and make my announcement.”
For the last month, Jackson has swatted away questions about his NFL future with the same consistency and regularity as he does a pass headed in his direction. Most NFL draft projections list him as a first-round selection.
Following Iowa’s 27-20 Pinstripe Bowl win over Boston College on Wednesday, Jackson gave an indication for the first time that he knows his next move.
When asked how long he has had this inkling, Jackson gave a short answer.
“A while,” he said.
When asked if it was at the beginning of the December, he went back to his deflecting ways.
“Maybe,” he said.
Jackson insisted his mind isn’t 100 percent made up. He used the word patience multiple times when discussing his decision-making process. Jackson doesn’t want to do anything rash or make the wrong choice. It’s why he said he won’t make any announcements yet.
“I will probably make a decision in January,” Jackson said.
Jackson caught the attention of NFL general managers and scouts with a breakout season. At 6-foot-1, 192 pounds, Jackson is the kind of tall, rangy, athletic cornerback NFL teams desire.
He played as well as any cornerback in the nation. He earned All-America honors after tying for the national lead with 8 interceptions and is tops nationally with 2.08 passes defended per game. And he wrapped up his season in style, sealing the Iowa win with a fourth-quarter interception.
Coach Kirk Ferentz had nothing but praise for him.
“Like a lot of the great players that we’ve had historically ― and I’ve been very fortunate we’ve had a lot of guys in our program that we have up in a pretty hallowed place ― they’re better guys than they are players, and Josh, that’s exactly what I’d tell you about him.”