With Virginia Tech quarterback Josh Jackson returning for his redshirt sophomore season with two years of experience in the system and a year of starting experience under his belt, a lot of what he hopes to improve on this offseason should come naturally.
Time in a program like Virginia Tech virtually assures you’ll mature physically thanks to a top-notch strength and conditioning staff and all the decision-making gets a little easier with a stronger grasp of the playbook that comes with entering your third year with a coaching staff.
Leadership is like that too — to an extent. You get more comfortable with your team and your role and how you choose to lead comes more inherently.
As a quarterback, you have no choice but to lead. However, there is the matter of deciding how you’ll lead. That’s one of the things Jackson is sorting through this spring.
“I definitely want to be more vocal and try to be a better leader,” Jackson said according to Mike Barber of the Richmond Times-Dispatch. “That was definitely like a focus for me this offseason, especially in the workouts and everything like that. Trying to do that and try to help my fellow teammates along was big for me.”
And that decision to become more vocal is a clear departure from last season, when Jackson was more focused on winning and keeping the starting job than taking complete ownership of the football team. He’ll still have to compete in a talented room in 2018, but he’s got a much firmer grip on the starting role now and that gives him the chance to claim this team as his own.
As hard as that is to measure, that could ultimately be the difference between another good but not great year for the Hokies or competing for a championship. So with everybody looking to see Justin Fuente’s program take a leap in Year Three, how Jackson chooses to assert himself and how the team responds could make the difference.
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