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USC's Adoree' Jackson says he first dunked in the eighth grade

USC's Adoree' Jackson said he first dunked a basketball when he was 5-foot-7 and in the eighth grade.

His story is believable.

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Jackson, listed at 5 feet 11 and 185 pounds, was a standout on defense, offense and special teams for the football team as a freshman last season and he capped the year by winning the Pac-12 championship in the long jump.

Trojans Coach Steve Sarkisian said last month at Pac-12 media days that Jackson could be the most gifted athlete he has ever coached.

Jackson called his eighth-grade dunk his most impressive athletic feat and said it helped shape his athletic career.

"That's when I started long jumping, cause the coaches saw me jump, dunking the ball," he said.

Jackson will start at cornerback for a second season.

He also will play receiver and return kickoffs, along with the added duty of returning punts.

"The physically gifted part goes a long way. God blessed me a lot and, just blessed me with my physical abilities, just me being smart out there on the field," Jackson said.

Questions or comments about USC? Email me at LNThiry@gmail.com or tweet @LindseyThiry and I will respond to select messages in a weekly USC Now mailbag.

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