Robert Jackson Named Receivers Coach
Longtime Illinois prep coach returns to homestate -12/19/98
Longtime Illinois prep coach Robert Jackson, who has spent the last two seasons as Director of Football Operations at Oregon State, has returned to his homestate as receivers coach at the University of Illinois, it was announced earlier today by Head Coach Ron Turner. Jackson has served on the Oregon State coaching staff since 1990, as receivers coach from 1990-96, assistant head coach and receivers coach in 1996-97 and Director of Football Operations for the past two seasons.
"We're really excited to have Robert join our coaching staff," said Turner. "He has a great deal of experience and a wealth of knowledge at the high school and college level. He has a tremendous reputation as a recruiter and has an excellent background and rapport with Illinois coaches from his long career in this state. His experience coaching in the Chicago area will be a great asset in our recruiting efforts."
Jackson grew up in suburban Harvey and attended Thornton Township High School, playing several sports and serving as senior class president. Jackson was a four-year letterwinner at Northern Illinois in football and baseball, ranking among the nation's leading hitters as a junior and earning all-conference and all-NCAA tournament honors. He received his bachelor's degree in Education from Northern Illinois in 1974.
"Having grown up in and spent 40 years of my life in Illinois, this is a real pleasure for me to return to my homestate at the University of Illinois," said Jackson. "Illinois has always had great players and I always felt that this was a powerhouse program waiting to happen if we could keep the best Illinois players at home. Coach Turner and his staff have done a great job of getting after the high schools in the state of Illinois. I have always had a great deal of loyalty to Illinois, wanting my home state university to do well and I like the support from the athletic administration toward football and the right people are in place to make this program successful."
A highly successful prep coach at Thornwood High School from 1974-85, Jackson served as head football and baseball coach before moving to Northern Illinois as receivers coach from 1985-90. During his career at NIU, Jackson helped the Huskies rank among the nation's leading offensive teams, post a 9-2 record in 1989 and recruited and coached former NCAA record-holder QB Stacey Robinson.
Jackson moved to Oregon State in 1990, recruiting prep All-American standout Tim Alexander. During his nine years at Oregon State, Jackson served as academic coordinator for the football program and helped deliver a program that led the nation in graduation rates among football programs in 1994 (94.6 percent) and produced 25 Academic All-Pac 10 selections in 1994-95.
During his last two seasons in Corvallis, Jackson monitored the $ 4.6 million football budget, coordinated all support areas related to OSU football, assisted in the certification process for incoming student-athletes, managed building administration and scheduled all football trips and weekends.
Jackson will begin his duties at Illinois this weekend. His son, Bobby, is a sophomore at Illinois and a two-year starting strong safety for the Illini.