D'Qwell Jackson realized during his appearance on "Late Night With Locks" that he owed Maryland coach Mike Locksley an apology over the stress he caused when he was being recruited as a high school prospect.
"I put you through it," he said. "That's probably when you started to lose your hair man. Let me apologize. Because I never have. Because I put you through it."
Locksley told the story of recruiting Jackson to Maryland. It was signing day. The letter of intent was in Jackson's hand. And all of a sudden while on the phone with Jackson, Locksley hears his high school coach in the background.
"And I'm like D'Qwell, just sign it and send it in. And his coach in the background was like 'don't rush, take your time," he remembered. "... I'm like D'Qwell. Send the fax in."
After a couple of hours back and forth, Locksley gave up. He went home and when he came in the next morning, there were three pieces of paper on the floor from the fax machine (yes it was that long ago) with Jackson's commitment.
"I was like there's no way I'm going to beat Florida on a Florida kid with his high school coach pushing him," Locksley remembers thinking when he left the night before.
Jackson remembers thinking it was the toughest decision he would ever have to make. He told Locksley on Friday that that night back in high school he was at a coach's house and they brought out a big sheet of paper and went through the pros and cons.
"We did it with every school. In my mind, I knew I wanted to go to Maryland, but I just needed some reassurance," he said.
Jackson's first offer for college came from UCF. But Maryland and Locksley - who at the time was coaching under Ralph Friedgen - came shortly after on the recruiting trail.
"And when that happened, the floodgates opened up. I have to give you the credit where credit is due. Because of you, I got the attention necessary to play DI," Jackson said.
So after going through the pros and cons sheet, the pros outweighed everything. But Jackson couldn't sign it right away. He needed another night to think about it.
"It was tough. Where I grew up, you're either a diehard Florida State fan or you're a diehard University of Florida fan," he said. "... If you didn't get attention from either of these schools, you were considered second-tier."
In the end, he knew he wanted to be more in the DMV area. He signed the letter of intent and never looked back.
"It was the best decision I could have made for myself," he said.
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