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Gorman: Quaker Valley's Jackson a dual threat

| Tuesday, Aug. 19, 2014, 9:24 p.m.
Kristina Serafini | Trib Total Media
Quarterback Dane Jackson receives a snap during football practice on Wednesday, Aug. 13, 2014, at Chuck Knox Stadium in Leetsdale.

Dane Jackson is one of the most dynamic dual-threat quarterbacks in the WPIAL, with a reputation for running to daylight, if not paydirt.

The Quaker Valley star kept opponents guessing by rushing for 1,111 yards and 10 touchdowns and passing for 975 yards and 13 touchdowns as a junior.

“It makes it hard for a lot of defenses,” Jackson said, “because they don't know whether you're going to pass or run.”

But Jackson, a Cornell senior who plays football for Quaker Valley under a cooperative sponsorship, knows his future is on the other side of the ball.

That's where he covers the sky like a cloud. Jackson, who already has given a verbal commitment to Pitt, projects as a college cornerback.

“I've played defense basically my whole life,” Jackson said. “It will be kind of tough, but I know I can do it. I work on it all the time, so I'll be fine.”

At 6-foot, 168 pounds, Jackson has great size for a defensive back. His athleticism is evident by his basketball ability, where he averaged 28.5 points.

“It helps me a lot,” Jackson said. “I'm tall for a corner. It will be tough for quarterbacks to throw over me. And I'm pretty physical, so I can jam my man in coverage.”

With Chris Conlan playing opposite Jackson, Quaker Valley could have one of the top cornerback duos in WPIAL Class AA. It's why Jackson has big goals.

“I just want to lead my team to the best season ever,” Jackson said. “That's it.”

Whether he does it at quarterback or cornerback, Jackson promises to be a dual threat.

Kevin Gorman is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at kgorman@tribweb.com or via Twitter @KGorman_Trib.

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