Athlete to Watch: Hopkins Standout George Jackson


What are your expectations for this upcoming outdoor track and field season?

There have been so many uncertainties with track and field in MN the last couple of years. So I don't really know what to expect. But one thing is for certain I will enjoy every meet like it's my last and really just enjoy the blessing that is running. If my best means winning state and getting state records that's awesome if not that's ok too. I just want to leave a legacy more than just being a guy who can run really fast over barriers.

What have you been up to since we last saw you competing in track and field?

I have been doing a lot of training of course and school, but the main thing I have been doing is trying my best to leave my mark on my high school at Hopkins. I have been involved in reimagining school safety at the school, Black history month, and a couple of other things. I really just want to better the world around me so that the people coming up have even more chances than I have had to thrive. 

What are you most looking forward to this season?

I am looking forward to building up the foundation of the Hopkins track team this season. When I was a youngin on the team I was blessed enough to have great captains and coaches who taught me how to lead, build a culture, and support my teammates. So I am looking forward to doing the same for the younger kids this year, and giving two seasons worth of effort to the team.

You are one of the top returning jumpers and hurdlers in the state this season, how does that affect your expectations for yourself?

There's definitely some pressure that comes with that, but like coach Lovas says pressure is a blessing. I feel like I have had the best coaches and best supporting cast around me in the history of Minnesota track and field so I want to be the best hurdler and jumper ever. I want to be able to repay all their hard work and sacrifices for me by being the best ever. I know the people around me will love me regardless but I want the state records in these events to say look what we did. But that's all if it's in God's plan for me, and in the end, I trust him completely.

You usually participate in the long jump and hurdles, do you have a favorite of those events?

I love to watch long jump and train for jumping. But hurdles will always have a special place in my heart. From the bumps and bruises from hitting the hurdles or the feeling of executing one perfectly and catching someone in a race, I love everything about hurdling. Only the 110s, though, the 300s are a roller coaster of a race.

How have you been training during this long track and field layoff?

I have been blessed enough to have a great Sensei( Hurdle coach) that has taught me how to build a workout regiment. So me and a couple of friends have been meeting 5-6 times a week to run and lift. I have been taking extra time in the weight room to try and build my explosive strength. And focusing a lot on my strength in running. Sophomore year I didn't have the best state meet because I was lacking the strength mentally and physically so I wanted to make sure I got rid of those weaknesses. 

You are committed to the University of Kansas, how did you choose to go there? 

God truly blessed me during such a difficult time for many athletes. I had a couple of offers from different schools but it ended up being a close decision between two schools. This led to me traveling across the country in a single weekend to visit these schools. My mom really wanted me to commit on November 11( the first official commitment day) and because of the dead period, I couldn't go on any official visits. So me and some friends went to go explore the schools for ourselves. As soon as I walked on KUs campus I knew this was where I wanted to go. Also, Coach Redwine and Coach Thornton really made me feel wanted, and have built an amazing program that I am blessed enough to be surrounded by greatness when I attend. They also have an amazing meal and room plan!