Sprint Star Julia Jackson of SPF Commits To Duke

Julia Jackson of Scotch Plains-Fanwood, one of the top quarter-milers in the nation, announced on her Instagram account on Thursday night that she has committed to Duke University.

"Beyond excited to announce my commitment to further my academic and athletic career at Duke University,'' Jackson wrote. "Thank you to my family, coaches, friends, and everyone else who has helped me through this process.''  

The Blue Devils are getting a huge star!

Jackson, the state leader all season last spring in the 400m, capped off the greatest season by a girl in Scotch Plains-Fanwood history by striking gold twice at the NJSIAA Meet of Champions at Frank Jost Field in South Plainfield.

First, she fought off a strong challenge from Sydney Goldson of Holmdel to win the 400m with a PR and NJ#1 time of 54.48. Jackson, who finished the season undefeated in the 400m, is the only girl from SPF to ever win an individual title at the M of C.

Jackson returned later in the meet to split 55.21 to bring SPF across the line first in the 4x400 3:46.73, which lowered its NJ#1 time by more than three seconds.  

Jeff Koegel, the head girls T&F coach at Scotch Plains-Fanwood, said Duke is a great fit for Jackson.  

"We knew that Julia would wind up at a good school and aren't surprised that she choose Duke,'' said Koegel. "She's a strong student as well, so Duke will be a great fit for her both academically and athletically. We are going to miss having her here, but she will be leaving us with some of our greatest coaching moments. We can't wait to see what she does at Duke.''

This is the second straight year that Duke has landed the biggest star from Union County, and one of the most sought after recruits in New Jersey.  

Last year, Westfield's Katie Hamilton, who won the 1,600m at the M of C last June, committed to Duke. That's a powerful 1-2 NJ punch for the Blue Devils. We can't wait to see what Hamilton and Jackson do together when they team up on some DMR's and SMR's!!