QB recruit leaves team amid charges

Pinkel says “personal issues” led to Jackson’s withdrawal.
Friday, August 20, 2004 | 12:00 a.m. CDT; updated 12:32 a.m. CDT, Saturday, July 5, 2008

Star recruit and Missouri quarterback Darrell Jackson has withdrawn from the university and the football team after undisclosed charges were filed against him in St. Louis County.

The freshman missed Wednesday morning’s practice but returned for the afternoon session. He was absent again Thursday morning. After practice, coach Gary Pinkel said Jackson had left the university.

“He withdrew from classes to attend to personal issues,” Pinkel said. “That’s the only statement that will ever be made about the issue, from me and the university.”

Kim Moeckel, St. Louis County Family Court spokesperson, said Jackson faces undisclosed criminal juvenile charges that were filed Tuesday.

Officials would not disclose the nature of the charges because the incident for which Jackson was charged allegedly occurred when he was 16 or younger.

The St. Louis County Prosecutor’s Office filed a petition to certify Jackson as an adult Wednesday so he could be tried in criminal court.

That certification hearing is set for 11:30 a.m. Sept. 16 in juvenile court and is closed to the public.

Defense lawyer Scott Rosenblum confirmed that he is representing Jackson but would not comment.

“The case is a sealed matter at this time,” Rosenblum said.

Jackson was one of the Tigers’ best recruits and chose Missouri over Illinois, Iowa State, Kansas and Minnesota.

As the quarterback for Webster Groves High School near St. Louis, Jackson set the Missouri state total offense record in 2003 with 3,921 yards.

SuperPrep Magazine named him the No. 17 quarterback in the nation and the No. 20 player at any position.

Jackson was competing with fellow freshman quarterbacks Mack Breed and former Rock Bridge standout Chase Patton for the No. 3 quarterback spot behind Brandon Coleman and potential Heisman Trophy candidate Brad Smith.

Patton said he and Jackson did not discuss Jackson’s problems at Wednesday afternoon’s practice. Patton said he was disappointed to see Jackson go after working closely with him for the past two weeks.

“It’s a tough situation and I just hope he gets through it and everything, and I hope he gets back here,” Patton said Thursday. “I got to know him pretty well over these past couple weeks and I just hope everything goes all right for him.”

WATCH LISTED: Missouri quarterback Brad Smith continued to receive national attention Wednesday when the Walter Camp Football Foundation announced its 2004 Player of the Year Watch List.

After 10 semi-finalists are announced in early November, 117 Division I-A coaches and sports information directors will vote for the winner.

Smith is one of 40 players on the list and the winner will be announced in early December on the ESPN/Home Depot College Football Awards Show.

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