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Contact: Mario Boone
ATLANTA (AUG. 31, 2016) Dexter Jackson devoured opponents for 10 years as a safety and defensive back in the NFL. In 2003 Jackson was named MVP of Super Bowl XXXVII, a game in which his Tampa Bay Buccaneers defeated the Oakland Raider 48-21. He also had playing stints with the Arizona Cardinals and the Cincinnati Bengals. Several of his games were played at the historic Soldier Field in Chicago. Now, more than seven years after leaving the league, Jackson is preparing to return to Soldier Field as an assistant football coach at Clark Atlanta University (CAU). The CAU Panthers are headed to the Windy City Sept. 10, to battle Central State University in the long-running Chicago Football Classic.
“It’s the pinnacle of sports, being in the NFL, to go back to Soldier Field as a coach,” said Jackson, CAU’s defensive backs coach. The married father of four girls admitted stepping foot back on Solider Field is a bit nostalgic. “It feels good,” he said, with a pinch of laughter.
Jackson estimates he played in at least five games at Soldier Field during his NFL career. Yet, it’s not about reminiscing over his glory days. Jackson and his fellow coaches are eager to help current CAU football players create their own memories from their very first appearance in the Chicago Football Classic. “I really hope they can grasp the concept of playing in big games and get used to it,” Jackson said.
He knows what it’s like better than most. The smell of the grass. The roar of the crowd. The flicker of stadium lights it could all be distracting, even intimidating for young players who have never been on this big a stage. That’s where Jackson’s experience will play a huge role. “It’s no secret grass, or anything. It’s the same as a college field,” Jackson remembered. “You just have to believe that anything is possible,” he preaches to players.
The CAU Panthers and coaches are working hard to get ready for the “Chi-Town” showdown under the leadership of Head Coach Kevin Ramsey, who took the helm in July 2015. Jackson said one important goal of the Classic is to showcase CAU to prospective students in hopes they will give the Panthers serious consideration for their college career. “Clark Atlanta is doing great things and students should want to come here,” Jackson proclaimed.Category: Athletics
Keywords: Dexter Jackson, Chicago Football Classic