Posted: 11:51 am Tuesday, March 25th, 2014

Former Tech LB at mock trial nationals 

By Ken Sugiura

kylejackson

Kyle Jackson (left) and Kevin Coleman will compete for the National Trial Competition championship this week in Austin, Texas.

Former Georgia Tech linebacker Kyle Jackson’s days on the playing fields have passed, but he is engaged in and succeeding in a national collegiate competition of a different stripe.

Jackson, a second-year law student at Georgia State, will compete in a national mock trial competition this week after he and teammate Kevin Coleman won the 28-team Southeast region competition in February.

The National Trial Competition, to be held in Austin, Texas, is considered to be one of the oldest and most prestigious mock trial competitions in the country.

Jackson has found that mock trials have given him the same charge he felt playing at Bobby Dodd Stadium.

“I really came to law school because I wanted to try cases,” Jackson said. “Mainly, the preparation going into it, the feeling you get when you’re in the courtroom is like waiting on the first snap. It’s so much like football that I think really I needed something to fill that void, something to give me butterflies again.”

Jackson was part of the heralded 2007 recruiting class that included Derrick Morgan, Jonathan Dwyer and Morgan Burnett. Jackson, in fact, earned the nickname “The Ambassador” for his role in pulling the class together. Jackson started 10 games as a freshman in 2008 but missed the 2009 season after tearing the Lisfranc ligament in his foot. He started two games in 2010 but decided to give up football to prepare for law school.

Jackson graduated in Dec. 2010 with a management degree and then worked for a year as a legal assistant while studying for the LSAT. He enrolled at Georgia State in 2012. He interned last summer at Holland & Knight in Atlanta and will intern this summer at Weinberg, Wheeler, Hudgins, Gunn & Dial. Among the partners at that firm is another former Tech linebacker, Steve Mooney, who played on the 1980 team that tied No. 1 Notre Dame.

There is little doubt that Jackson has taken this endeavor seriously. On top of their course studies, he and Coleman, who played football at Morehouse, prepared for the regional competition with practices that lasted up to eight hours.

In the competition, entrants were given information for a lawsuit and then had to argue the case as both plaintiff and defendant against competing schools. They first had to advance out of pool competition and then into the elimination rounds. He took particular pleasure in beating a team from Georgia’s law school.

“There were multiple times I looked at Kevin and I was like, Kevin, if we don’t advance, I think I’ll try to flip a table,” Jackson said. “It’s one of those things. It’s so competition-driven, it pulls so much of the same emotion, it’s hilarious.”

Jackson and Coleman will be one of 28 teams at the national competition, which begins Wednesday and runs through Sunday.

“I expect something like a BCS crystal ball, or at least something large in height,” he said. “I don’t care if it’s made of plastic.”

30 comments
Wrecker
Wrecker

Great job, Kyle!  We share our undergraduate and law school alma maters.  We are all proud of you! 

Born2Buzz
Born2Buzz

This story proves what I have been saying, we have plenty of options for degrees at GT to attract all the football players needed to compete in big boy football.  You can do pre-law and pre-med at GT.  Any student athlete that comes to GT can do just about anything they want in life.  The limited curriculum is not an excuse for not competing.

The inability to hide kids that are dumb as stumps might be an issue. 

juvenal
juvenal

hope they put the TO on trial_"can this dinosaur O survive in the 21st century?"

FBYJ
FBYJ

Great job ... and great article.  Thanks, Ken.

GT Fan 4Ever
GT Fan 4Ever

Got to love our former Union Grove Wolverine and GT Yellow Jacket doing well! Proud of you Kyle!!

gtcaryd
gtcaryd

Great story Ken, another Tech success!

ConfederateFlagBurner
ConfederateFlagBurner

A Morehouse Man & a Jacket. I know plenty of Morehouse Jackets actually and all of them are doing well. 

JacketMan
JacketMan

It's like I said before, anyone who says a football player (or any student for that matter) can't get into Law School if they go to GA Tech is an idiot. I was able to do it and I'm happy, and proud to see, Kyle following his dream, too, and doing so well. Best of luck at Nationals. THWG

GTBob
GTBob

I love stories like this. It makes me appreciate our student athletes a little more.

TechTroll13
TechTroll13

But wait, I thought our football players were no better than UGA's.  I guess that's not true.  Congrats to Kyle, I hear there is a lot of work oppotunities at the Clarke County prosecutor's office.

SupersizeThatOrder-mutt
SupersizeThatOrder-mutt

" He took particular pleasure in beating a team from Georgia’s law school."

You gotta love that attitude  :-)

GeorgeStein
GeorgeStein

@juvenal  Takes a unique kind of jacka-- to take an article about a former player succeeding and make it about the offense.   Congrats!


Way to go, Kyle.  

GeorgeStein
GeorgeStein

@JacketMan  Actually, Tech graduates have a unique opportunity in the legal field.   The industry is starving for patent lawyers, and individuals who have an engineering background fit that need perfectly.   Starting salaries are through the roof for people who can do the job.

POAD2013
POAD2013

@JacketMan  Add Sean Bedford to that list. Sean is/was in the Law School at Florida after leaving TECH(Aerospace Engineering Degree) and playing football in Spain and enjoying the world travel.

juvenal
juvenal

taking "offense" again, GS? hee-haw............(was at least tangential......btw, many successful former players tiring of .500 results....)

HighTechJacket99
HighTechJacket99

WnE is offended very easily by anything positive about Tech.

GeorgeStein
GeorgeStein

@juvenal  Ha!  That's just precious.   The next attorney who coerces an individual to hire him/her will be the first.

juvenal
juvenal

a market manipulated by lawyers............

juvenal
juvenal

tho' even i would not go so far to compare the TO to a dead horse..........

juvenal
juvenal

try this one, then.............more lawyers? just what we need........

GeorgeStein
GeorgeStein

@juvenal  Not really, dude.   A simple "great work, Kyle" would have been sufficient for this article.   Try beating your dead horses on a more relevant post.