Jackson Delk had a role in each of the places he played. The South Jones senior basketball standout, who played his junior season at Laurel before returning home to Ellisville for his senior season, will continue to play a role at the next level. Delk will continue his basektball career as a preferred walk-on at Jones College.
“He can stroke it,” said South Jones head coach Brian Butler. “He can flat out stroke it. Even when he wasn’t making shots, he was still dangerous because opponents were afraid that the next one would go in. Because of him being on the floor, we were able to space things out offensively that we couldn’t normally do if he wasn’t there.”
Laurel head coach Marcus Price, who coached Delk during the season he spent at Laurel, had similar words to say.
“Jackson was out shooter,” said Price. “He was going to shoot over 50 percent behind the arc. He was the guy to helped stretch the floor for us, and we’d run him off the screen. He made big plays for us all the time. He was our guy that was most consistent for us and one of the most consistent guys that I’ve coached.
“He was never late, and he always stayed late to work on parts of his game. As a shooter, we missed him quite a bit this past season. I’d loved to have had him this year again. But I’m just happy for the young man because he’s a great young man.”
During his senior season, Dell averaged nearly 10 points per game (9.2) and led the team in shot percentage behind the arc at 37 percent. He also led the team in free throw percentage at 72 percent.
Delk says his skill of shooting the basketball developed thanks to the help of Laurel assistant coach and trainer Randy Pettis.
“Coach Pettis always told me to develop a specific skill set,” Delk said. “We developed my skill set to be a knockdown shooter, especially during my junior year. We threw everything out the window, broke my shot down and it paid off. I owe a lot to Coach Pettis, Coach Price and especially Coach Butler this year for the event of today. The day I walked into the gym at South Jones [this school year] Coach Butler asked me where I wanted to play. I told him I wanted to go to Jones College and Coach Butler made that happen for me.”
Other junior colleges showed interest in Delk, but the moment Jones came calling, Delk answered.
“I wanted to stay home,” added Delk. “I had others that showed some interest, but I’m thankful that Coach [Randy] Bolton gave me the opportunity.”
Each coach noted Delk as being more than a great shooter.
“First of all he’s a great kid,” said Butler. “He’s a great kid with a great work ethic. He’s busted his butt all season to lead us and help us out. He was a big piece in us trying to change the culture of basketball here at South Jones. He understands the role he plays and gets to play at the next level. And that is very rare.”