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2019 Nike EYBL Preview: Interview with Isaiah Jackson

By D1 Circuit Staff, 04/18/19, 7:00PM EDT

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6-foot-10 Isaiah Jackson is a 5-star recruit according to every major recruiting outlet, and the junior forward is set to begin his second season with The Family Detroit.

Jackson (247 No. 16) averaged 6.8 points, 5.8 rebounds, and 2.2 blocks per game in 2018, and he will enter the 2019 season on the short list of contenders to lead the EYBL in blocked shots.

Jackson's bag of tricks will be on display in EYBL Atlanta, and before the circuit tips off, we caught up with the talented junior to address a variety of topics, including his thoughts on the EYBL, what he's looking to improve and his hobbies off the court.

Q: If there’s one memory or event so far whether it’s high school or grassroots ball, that stands out or has significant meaning to you what would that be? Winning a tournament, a big shot, first dunk, etc.

Isaiah Jackson: I have a couple. One of them was my first dunk in a game which was my 7th grade year. I contested a shot and just remember running down the court and calling for the ball and my teammate threw it to me and I took two dribbles and did a one handed dunk and it felt like I hit a game winner. My teammates were jumping all over me and I was turned up inside but I just kept running down the court like nothing happened. In my head I’m like “did I really just dunk?!”

The other one was winning Peach Jam my 9th grade year. We weren’t even supposed to get invited because we didn’t win a championship in the tournament we were supposed to. I don’t know how but we got invited and won and in the championship. We beat the other team by like 25 so that was another good feeling and moment for me.

What’s the toughest part about playing in the EYBL?

IJ: I think the competitiveness. To be honest, it seems like everybody that plays is good and has something to prove.  Every game you gotta play hard, there is no letting up.

What’s one food that you can’t live without?

IJ: Probably candy (haha).

Take me through your pregame routine.

IJ: Listen to music; probably some Lil Yachty or 21 Savage then eat some Skittles and then just play!

What drives you on the court to be great?

IJ: The environment I came from and the place I live and where my family still lives is what drives me. I don’t want my little cousins to be raised in the environment I was raised in and just want to get them out. The haters also push me too.

What’s the most underestimated part of your game?

IJ: Probably my shooting. I didn’t really get to shoot the ball this season because of how my team played so I think this EYBL season everybody is going to see a lot of shooting from me.

How was it playing with SPIRE this season and did you feel like there was a target on your back?

IJ: It was a really good experience with playing with all the cameras in my face 24/7 and it was also really fun playing with my team and just being around the guys.

Most definitely; everybody that played us viewed it like a championship to them but they were just a regular games to us. It was almost like we were the team to beat just so you can say “we beat SPIRE” so yeah there was definitely a target on our back all year.

In 10 years where do you see yourself?

IJ: I see myself hopefully playing in the League and owning a couple of businesses. Also doing stuff in my community.

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