Nov. 11, 2010
In his first season donning an Irish uniform, Bennett Jackson has been a key contributor on special teams. After starting the season primarily as a gunner on Notre Dame’s kickoff and punt teams, Jackson has emerged as one of the feature return men on kickoffs. GameDay’s Brendan Corsones gives Irish fans a chance to get to know Bennett Jackson.
Corsones: What is your intended major, and why does it interest you?
Jackson: I’m leaning towards business; I just like the idea of the business world and figured I’d get into it.
Corsones: What is your favorite place on campus?
Jackson: I’m going to say Notre Dame Stadium.
Corsones: What is your earliest football memory?
Jackson: I think it’s playing Mighty-Mites and getting my first touchdown.
Corsones: What has been the toughest stadium to play in so far?
Jackson: I would say probably Michigan State; out of our away games so far that was the toughest.
Corsones: What has been the most important thing you’ve learned at Notre Dame?
Jackson: Commitment to the team and commitment to the school.
Corsones: What has been you favorite Coach Kelly saying?
Jackson: Oh man, anything he’s said to Big Lou (nose tackle Louis Nix).
Corsones: What is one thing you want to happen before you leave Notre Dame?
Jackson: My all-time goal, as a kick returner, is to break the return record here, and I’m trying.
Corsones: What song always gets you ready to take the field?
Jackson: “Right Above It,” by Lil’ Wayne.
Corsones: What do your fellow students always want to know?
Jackson: They always ask if we’re going to win, and I have to say I don’t know, but we’re going to try.
Corsones: What is your favorite TV show?
Jackson: Definitely not Jersey Shore, because I’m from Jersey, but I don’t have a television in my room so I don’t really have one.
Corsones: What do you miss the most about home?
Jackson: Just my family, and my friends.
Corsones: North or South dining hall?
Jackson: I wasn’t a North fan at first because I didn’t know where everything was, because I was eating at South all summer. North has some good stuff though, so I’ll go with North.
Corsones: If Hollywood made a movie about your life, whom would you like to see play you in the lead role?
Jackson: I’ll go with Jamie Foxx.
Corsones: If you were to put together a foursome to play golf, dead or alive, who would round it out?
Jackson: I’d play with (wide receiver) Mike Floyd, because I hear he is the worst golfer, Louis Nix and I’d go with (wide receiver) Daniel Smith.
Corsones: If you weren’t playing football, what sport would you be playing?
Jackson: I would be running Track.
Corsones: Who has been the most influential person in your life and why?
Jackson: My mom, because she’s been through rough times and basically raised my sister and me on her own. There isn’t anyone whom I respect more than my Mom.
Corsones: What song on your iPod would surprise people?
Jackson: I’ve got some slow jams; I’m a slow jams kind of guy. I have some Keith Sweat, Boyz II Men and maybe even some Justin Bieber.
Corsones: If you could trade places with any person, famous or not famous, living or dead, real or fictional. Who would it be?
Jackson: Floyd Mayweather. I wouldn’t box. I’d just chill.
Corsones: What was your best Halloween costume growing up?
Jackson: My grandma. I tucked a pillow in the back and the front and threw a wig on. It was cool.
Corsones: Do you have any pre-game rituals? If so, what?
Jackson: Not really. I just try to be relaxed and keep myself calm.
Corsones: If Coach Kelly were not coaching, what would he be doing for a living?
Jackson: He would be a motivational speaker somewhere.
Corsones: If you could have any job, what would it be?
Jackson: I would like to be a receivers’ coach, either in college or the pros.
Corsones: What were the things that sold you on Notre Dame?
Jackson: The whole package – the atmosphere of the games, the tradition and how widely-known the program is. Also, the guys here when I came were a lot cooler than other places I visited.
Corsones: How old were you when you started playing football?
Jackson: I was six when I got into it.
Corsones: What other sports did you play growing up?
Jackson: I was a soccer guy; I played soccer growing up more than football. I played soccer, baseball, football, basketball, and then when high school came I did track.
Corsones: What is your favorite place to go on vacation?
Jackson: I haven’t been on too many vacations. I did go to Virginia Beach for a basketball tournament. I really liked it there and would want to go back there again.
Corsones: Do you have any hidden talents?
Jackson: I think I’m a good singer. If they wanted me to sing the National Anthem before a game, I’d be down.