Mar’Chris Jackson – A Master of 3 Sports

Latoya D. Miles | August 28th, 2017
Mar’Chris Jackson (Photos by Shaw Photography Group)

Mar’Chris Jackson (Photos by Shaw Photography Group)

Born on October 2, 2000, it was an early sign that Mar’Chris Jackson would successfully balance the tasks of a student athlete. The Libra has his scales loaded as a triple threat excelling in baseball, basketball and football, all while being able to overcome a 2016 injury. Tearing his patella in late September, right around the time he was about to celebrate his “Sweet 16” birthday, the 5’ 10 ½” rising junior has fully recovered in less than a full calendar year, titling the scale back in his favor. He even had to learn how to walk again, a miraculous comeback in that turnaround time.

Mar’Chris has spent time in public institutions, but takes his talents to a private school this season, Harrells Christian Academy, a move his mother LaToya Jackson said was very necessary.

[Previously], if I didn’t get out and do it or make contact, he would be just another child left behind,” LaToya said with conviction. “I was getting ready to schedule SATs for him to take at a community college, but we transferred. So by us transferring, the school he attends now, they take care of all that.” Due to the injury, additional eligibility and to put a mandatory focus on his classes, Mar’Chris reclassified as an 11th grader this season and is taking senior courses then AP courses to further enhance his education. With aspirations in technology science and engineering, additional class work is necessary for the athletic scholar.
“With him being classified as a junior now, this is definitely a positive move,” the proud mother said. “He was classified as a senior in the public school, but I think this move is going to make him more grounded, more focused and definitely more into his books.”

Nicknamed Zino, he’s more joyful and playful away from sports, and always smiling, but he’s focused and a true leader when it comes to sports. In fact, his former teammates and coaches elected him as the 2016 MVP for his previous football squad at James James Kenan High School in Warsaw, NC. When the season commenced with Jackson on the field, the Tigers started their campaign with a flawless 4-0 record, before losing every game thereafter his torn patella injury, which sidelined him for the remainder of the season. It was a glaring statement of his significance on the gridiron, although the risk and injuries that come with sports have caused his protective matriarch to sometimes want to pull hair from her head.

I’ve come a long way,” the star’s mother said. “I’ve calmed down a lot. I used to get scared, but I know he’s going somewhere. It’ll be worth it.”
Insisting that there’s plenty of time for girlfriends, the 208-pound athlete even went to the prom with his sister last year, rather than a “date” as his sibling was completing her last year of high school. A decision his single mother heavily endorsed. Besides, Mar’Chris is a workout junkie and since the gym isn’t a “girl” he really doesn’t focus on much else other than school and sports.

“We have an open relationship, but he has time for girls,” the mother said with caution. “There’s no rush. The time will come for his license, girls, all that.”
As if the equilibrium of education and athletics wasn’t enough, the Libra takes his balancing act to another level as he’s also ambidextrous. He completes his studies with his right hand, but participates in sports with his left hand. This underrated skill puts Jackson in another league of his own, in addition to playing multiple positions in each of his three sports.

Not to be outdone by excelling at the pitcher position, first baseman, shortstop, shooting guard, running back, fullback, middle linebacker and outside linebacker, the standout also made a natural improvement from a designated hitter last season, is training to become a dominant safety, and dabbles in golf and soccer. Mar’Chris got into baseball because it was a challenge for him; he enjoys the double play and takes great pride in getting someone out. It’s an accomplishment that never gets old to him and he gets hype every time it happens.

Channeling two-time NBA champion and MVP Steph Curry when he plays offense in basketball and tenacious defense at the #2 position, and running backs, future Hall of Fame member, Adrian Peterson, Super Bowl champion, Marshawn Lynch and the gifted Marcelias Sutton from the Oklahoma Sooners, when on the court and field, the teenager received these sporty gifts through genetics. Just like the Jackson family from Gary, Indiana has musical genes, Mar’Chris had athletic genes passed down to him, from his uncles and grandfather, who excelled in sports and LaToya, was a standout in basketball and volleyball.

In addition to his involvement in sports being genetic traits, Mar’Chris also played received some of his skills from a 2-year stint in the controversial AAU programs, a part of his athletic blossoming that LaToya was not a huge fan of. “The guy who he was with, I really didn’t care for,” his mother said. “All the places that they were supposed to go were canceled on [their] behalf. I don’t know if I was [in the wrong program] or with the wrong person, but I really didn’t care for it.”

Currently, LaToya keeps Zino’s athletics school-related only. Additional exposure will come for the versatile athlete this season though, now that he’s attending school at a private institution. The Crusaders hit the gridiron and the road, taking on opponents in High Point, Raleigh and Fayetteville.

More balancing is coming the Libra’s way as football season continues in October; baseball season is still swinging in action, basketball season bounces its way on the calendar and class is still in session in the fall as well. Oh yeah and the celebrating of his 17th birthday in October is on deck as well.

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