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August 15, 20082008 Georgia signee Toby Jackson hoped to be in Athens right now competing for playing time as a freshman, but instead he will be heading north to play for Robert Prunty at Hargrave Military Prep School. Jackson could be hanging his head, but he is not. He is focused on the task at hand and ready to do what is needed to get to Athens.
"I am leaving on Friday and I am ready to go," said Jackson. "I have been training hard, running a lot, and making sure I am in great shape when I get there."
The 2008 Rivals100 defensive end knows he is heading for a Military school and a Military atmosphere, so he has done all he could do to be prepared.
"I have run a lot. I have really focused on being in shape, having good agility, and being ready to show my speed. I have lifted too, but I have concentrated on being in shape. I ran with parachutes and stuff like that to really make it tough. I feel good, I am in good shape, and I think I will be ready."
He knows a lot about Athens and the University of Georgia, but Hargrave is somewhat of a mystery to Jackson. He has a sense of what he is getting into, but he has a lot of questions too.
"I do not know much about Hargrave at all," he explained. "I have talked to Coach Prunty and Coach Davis, but I don't know too much about the program there. They have talked to me a little about the school, how things work, and things like that, but all I know about it is the location (Chatham, Va.) and it is a Military school. Everything else I will learn when I get there."
Playing at "The Grave" this fall is not like playing inside Sanford Stadium, but the talented Bulldog signee knows this is something that has to be done. He is not dwelling on this, but using it as motivation.
"I know what I have to do, I know I can get back to Georgia in January, and I am going to get that done," he exclaimed with confidence. "I am mentally prepared, I have a plan, and I have just one goal. I am going to get qualified and get back to Georgia."
That can be done rather quickly and that is what Jackson is shooting for.
"I know I can get my ACT up in one semester here and that is what I am going for. I am going to work hard, keep my focus, and do all I have to do to be in Athens next January. I want to get down there as soon as I can."
Mark Richt and Rodney Garner have stayed in contact with the 6-foot-4, 253 pound Griffin (Ga.) native throughout the summer and he feels as close to them as ever. They have given him advice, talked with him through his frustrations, and let him know that they are behind him one hundred percent.
Jackson appreciates that and he says he is one hundred percent sure where he will be once his time in Chatham is up.
"I am definitely a Dawg and I am definitely going to be in Athens soon," Jackson said. "Fans should have no worries about me because I know Georgia is the place for me. I will be there soon."