MBB : Jackson signs with professional team in France

first_img Comments Rick Jackson’s post-NBA draft plans are playing out like he envisioned.After not being selected in the two-round draft back on June 23, Jackson decided he would play overseas for a year before returning to the United States as a free agent. As of Tuesday, that’s exactly what Jackson’s future looks like.Jackson signed a one-year contract with Chorale Roanne of the French Ligue Nationale de Basketball’s Pro A division, the top league in France that has produced NBA players such as Tony Parker and Bruce Bowen. Jackson’s father, Rick Jackson Sr., confirmed the news, which was announced on Chorale Roanne’s website Tuesday.‘He’s going to go over there, work on his game a little more,’ Jackson Sr. said. ‘We know he’s going to get a double-double, but we just want him to work on his game a little more.‘And then he’s going to come back here as a free agent next year and go to one of the teams in the NBA.’AdvertisementThis is placeholder textJackson graduated from Syracuse last May after a standout senior season. He led the Big East in field goal percentage, rebounds and blocks, averaged a double-double per game (13.1 points, 10.3 rebounds) and was named the Big East Defensive Player of the Year in his final season with the Orange.The power forward worked out for nine different NBA teams prior to the draft and was projected as a late second round pick. But his name was never called, which his father said led to some bitterness and the decision to play overseas.Jackson Sr. said the San Antonio Spurs and Atlanta Hawks both invited Jackson to team tryouts immediately following the draft, but his son had already made up his mind to go abroad.‘(Rick) said the Spurs had the 59th pick,’ Jackson Sr. said. ‘They should have picked him then.’Jackson could not be reached for comment on joining Chorale Roanne. His agent, B.J. Armstrong of the Wasserman Media Group, did not return phone calls to The Daily Orange.But Jackson’s father said Tuesday Jackson’s plan remains the same as it was after the draft — to play in Europe for a year before returning to the NBA as a free agent next season.‘That’s his dream,’ Jackson Sr. said. ‘And he’s not going to stop chasing his dream.’Jackson Sr. also added that Jackson has been working on his game with his former AAU coach Aaron Abbott in Philadelphia and will continue that training until he leaves for France in August.‘I would love to have had his name get called (in the draft),’ Jackson Sr. said. ‘But for some reason, it didn’t get called. But he’ll be fine. He’ll go over there for one year. And he’ll come back and make a team. No doubt about that.’[email protected] Facebook Twitter Google+center_img Published on July 4, 2011 at 12:00 pmlast_img read more