USC Gamecocks Football

Gamecocks defender ‘medically disqualified’ from USC football team

South Carolina defensive back Tavyn Jackson (28) during practice for the Outback Bowl against Michigan in Tampa, FL.
South Carolina defensive back Tavyn Jackson (28) during practice for the Outback Bowl against Michigan in Tampa, FL. tdominick@thestate.com

Just before the 2018 season, the South Carolina football team has lost a member of its defensive backfield.

Second-year defensive back Tavyn Jackson posted on his Instagram he’s stepping away from the team for health reasons. He had been out of practice with what coach Will Muschamp called “heat issues.”

“To start this off, I’ve been experiencing hard times since I’ve arrived to college but always managed to see through,” Jackson wrote on Instagram. “I appreciate all of the support from my family, friends and teammates. Without you guys especially my teammates I wouldn’t have gotten this far. The decision was made based on my future and what will come. I have been medically disqualified to play football again due to my sickle cell but USC is still honoring my scholarship and I’ll finish school with a degree. I thank everyone and keep me in your prayers. Spurs Up.”

Jackson’s post said the school will honor his scholarship, likely meaning a medical disqualification. He was moved from corner to safety just before August camp.

The 5-foot-9, 185-pound Florida product was a 2017 three-star recruit out of high school with strong coverage skills. As a senior, he had 76 tackles and four interceptions and was an all-state pick

He impressed USC coaches early in his time with the team, and Will Muschamp said he was expected to contribute as a true freshman.

But a hamstring injury put him on the shelf early in 2017, and it never healed enough for him to play, forcing a redshirt 2017.

The medical disqualification means the team is free to use his scholarship on another player, but the rest of his education at USC will be covered.

USC is still looking for the right mix at safety, with Jamyest Williams, Nick Harvey and a now-healthy J.T. Ibe likely battling for a spot next to Steven Montac.

University of South Carolina football recruit Tavyn Jackson of Tallahassee, Fla., is a high preforming athlete and student. In this video, he discusses his talents on the field and how he arrived to choosing his major.

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