Cornell Jackson, who spent the past two seasons as running backs coach at New Mexico, is in his first season as the Bears' running backs coach and his 21st as a college assistant.
In 2006, Jackson coached first-team All-Mountain West Conference tailback Rodney Ferguson, who rushed for 1,132 yards in leading the Lobos to a New Mexico Bowl appearance. A year earlier, Jackson pupil DonTrell Moore earned 2005 Mountain West Conference Offensive Player of the Year honors after becoming just the sixth player in NCAA history to rush for 1,000 yards four times in a career.
Prior to his second coaching stint at New Mexico, Jackson spent three seasons (2002-04) at Washington. He coached the Husky running backs in 2004 and had added duties as UW's recruiting coordinator. Jackson coached the Husky safeties in 2003 after instructing the UW inside linebackers during his first season in Seattle. He helped tutor Marquis Cooper, who led the team in tackles in 2002-03 and was selected by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the third round of the 2004 NFL Draft.
Before joining the Husky staff, Jackson worked at Houston for two seasons (2000-01) as the Cougars' linebackers coach. He mentored 2001 Conference USA co-Defensive Player of the Year Wayne Rogers. While at Houston, Jackson worked alongside first-year Baylor inside receivers coach/recruiting coordinator Jason Phillips.
Jackson enjoys an outstanding reputation for developing top-notch running backs. Prior to his Houston tenure, he tutored running backs at Arizona State from 1996-99, instructing Sun Devil standouts J.R. Redmond, Terry Battle, Jeff Paulk, Terrell Smith, Michael Martin, Delvon Flowers and Bruce Perkins. Five of those players were selected in the NFL Draft while Redmond and Battle earned All-Pac-10 honors.
Every season Jackson coached the Sun Devil running backs ASU finished in the top four in the Pac-10 in rushing. The 1996 Arizona State team that played in the 1997 Rose Bowl led the league with a 248.5-yard average. The following season the Sun Devils topped the Pac-10 at 193.8 yards per game.
He began his coaching career as running backs coach at Butler County [Kan.] Community College in 1987 before moving on to Central Missouri as a graduate assistant coach from 1988-89. From 1990-91, Jackson worked as the linebackers coach at Utah State and then coached the same position at Pacific from 1992-94. He then spent the 1995 campaign as outside linebackers coach at New Mexico before going to Arizona State.
Jackson has taken advantage of NFL internship programs to work for several of the league's teams during their off-season. He was an intern coach for linebackers for the Seattle Seahawks in 1993, worked with the St. Louis Rams' running backs in 1999 and was an intern coach for the Denver Broncos' running backs in 2001. In the summer of 2004, Jackson served as an intern with the San Diego Chargers coaching staff, working with linebackers.
The 1986 Sterling [Kan.] College graduate was a two-time all-conference defensive back (1982 and 1983) at Hinds [Miss.] Junior College. The Jackson, Miss., native is married to the former Lorri Raser.
The Jackson File
Born: Sept. 28, 1960, in Gulfport, Miss.
High School: Clinton High School, Clinton, Miss.
Alma Mater: Sterling [Kan.] College, 1986 (BA)
Collegiate Playing Experience: Sterling College, defensive back, 1984-85; Hinds [Miss.] Junior College, defensive back, 1982-83
1987: Butler County [Kan.] Community College, running backs
1988-89: Central Missouri, defensive ends
1990-91: Utah State, linebackers
1992-94: Pacific, linebackers
1995: New Mexico, linebackers
1996-99: Arizona State, running backs
2000-01: Houston, linebackers
2002-03: Washington, linebackers and safeties
2004: Washington, running backs & recruiting coordinator
2005-06: New Mexico, running backs
2007: Baylor, running backs
1996: Rose Bowl (coach)
1997: Sun Bowl (coach)
1999: Aloha Bowl (coach)
2002: Sun Bowl (coach)
2006: New Mexico Bowl (coach)
Did You Know?
Cornell Jackson was a two-time all-conference defensive back at Hinds (Miss.) Junior College. He is one of four Baylor offensive assistants who have coached on both sides of the ball during his collegiate coaching career.