Wide receiver Giles Jackson will be in uniform for the University of Washington football team but will sit out the Apple Cup in order to preserve a full season of eligibility in 2024.
On Monday, Husky offensive coordinator Ryan Grubb confirmed that the 5-foot-9, 178-pound senior speedster from Antioch, California, won't play in order to obtain a fourth UW season, and sixth overall counting his time spent at Michigan.
"We're going to do everything we can to make sure he doesn't play so he can play next year," Grubb said at the regular coaches news briefing.
The Huskies will send 15 players through senior ceremonies prior to Saturday's game, but Jackson won't be one of them.
In fall camp, Jackson broke his thumb in practice, forcing him to miss the Huskies' first five games of the season and somewhat spoiling his final college football season.
Jackson has appeared in four regular-season games, the maximum for redshirting, and he'll still be able to take part in the upcoming Pac-12 championship game and any bowl or playoff games thereafter because they don't count the way the eligibility restrictions are set up.
The only thing that would prevent this move is if the fourth-ranked and unbeaten Huskies (11-0 overall, 8-0 Pac-12) suffer a sudden rash of injuries and need him on the field in order to beat Washington State (5-6, 2-6).
"We have enough bodies to go out there and win the football game," Grubb said. "We put it on the guys a little bit with, 'Hey, to go out there and do your job so Giles can have another year to play football.' "
Jackson, who transferred to the UW from the Big Ten when Jimmy Lake was coach, has appeared in 29 career games and started eight in Montlake.
The attraction to him is his pure speed — at Michigan, he had 95- and 97-yard kickoff returns for touchdowns — plus he has excellent hands.
With normal starters Rome Odunze, Ja'Lynn Polk and Jalen McMillan each possibly eyeing the NFL draft in April, the Huskies will need to completely rebuild its first line of receivers next season.
A veteran such as Jackson would go a long way to make that transition easier. Counting his UW and Michigan totals, he has 73 career catches for 367 yards and 3 touchdowns. In his limited time this season, he has 13 catches for 103 yards, including a 28-yard TD grab against Oregon.
"So Giles can have another year to play footbqll. there'a a piece of motivation with our guys,— they certainly want that," Grubb said. "I know that Rome, J.P. and J-Mac, they take that personal. They want Giles to be able to play football next year."
WSU hasn't seen the last of of Giles Jackson either. By earning another year of eligibility, he'll be able to play in the newly scheduled Apple Cup next Sept. 14 at Lumen Field in Seattle.
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