Cameron Jackson is a 23 year old 203cm forward from Winchester, Virginia that is playing his rookie season in Germany. He began the season with the Syntainics MBC where he averaged 7,6ppg, 3,4rpg,1,0apg and 1,3spg. He recently joined the MHP Riesen Luudwigsburg. He began his basketball career at John Handley High School and then played at Wofford (NCAA) from 2014-2019 playing a total of 137 games and as a senior played 35 games averaging 14.5ppg, 7.6rpg, 2.8apg, 1.5spg, 1.0bpg, FGP: 58.4%, 3PT: 40.0%, FT: 61.6%. He spoke to germanhoops.com about basketball last summer before joining the Syntainics MBC.
Cameron thanks for talking to germanhoops.com. How did you experience your first transfer summer? Did you have sufficient offers coming out of school?
Yes, I received plenty of offers but I was happy with the Deal that MBC gave me and was excited to sign with them.
You signed your first professional contract with BBL team Syntainics MBC. What do you know in general about the country Germany and it’s basketball? Have you had friends or former opponents play here?
There is one player that is from Wofford that I know of that has played in the BBL. I took German classes in school so I have some basic knowledge of the country.
How blessed do you feel having this rookie opportunity with the Syntainics? Only a few Wofford players have played in Germany and only two guys in the BBL with Mike Lenzly and Brad Loesing. Did you talk to any of these guys to get some feedback about what will be awaiting you?
I am extremely appreciative of the opportunity that I have been given by Syntainitcs. I can’t wait to get over there. To be in this league my first year is a dream come true. I have not talked to either of the former Wofford players but I have met some people on my travels this summer and they have given me some insight.
Your only the second player from your home town Winchester to have made it as a professional player in Europe. The other is ex NBA player Erik Green. Is he like a role model for you and have you met him before in the gym or playground?
Yes, he has set the bar very high and I have looked at his career in college and the pros. I actually ran into him at the gym a week ago and he gave me some advice about what it’s like being a pro. I plan to reach out to him a little more as I go
It is a huge compliment when an easyCRedit BBL team takes a rookie. The Syntainics are very high on your abilities especially head coach Wojceich Kaminsky. What was the deciding factor that allowed you to sign with this team?
I was honored by the interest that they gave me. After talking to coach Kaminsky, it seemed like he knew my game well and thought that I could help his team win games. It is also like you said too as a rookie there is no way that I could refuse an offer like this.
Let’s talk about your game. You’re a 203cm forward that can do a lot on the court. If you had to compare your game to an NBA player who would best fit the description best?
I like to watch a lot of Al Horford and Paul Millsap. They both do a lot of great things for their respective teams. They are mobile skilled guys that I have tried to watch for some years.
You’re a forward, but it seems like the German club has you penciled in as the center. Did you play much center at Wofford? How much of a challenge is this for you?
I played the Center at Wofford so it’s nothing that I’m not used to. I usually guard the other teams center so this will be a lot like that, obviously the competition will be much better though.
You’re a very ambitious and aggressive defender. It seemed like you really picked up your defensive game in your fourth season at Wofford. How much pride do you take on the defensive end and what do you need to still do to be able to make the next step as a defender at the professional level?
I need to be a smarter defender at the next level, my ambition sometimes got the best of me and that cannot happen at the next level. As far as at Wofford, defense is a huge part of what the coaches put a lot of importance on defense
You only took 27 three’s in your five years at Wofford. Do you see developing your three more in the next years as a professional player?
Yes, I plan to shoot more if my team needs and wants it. I didn’t shoot a lot mainly because my team was surrounded with shooters so there was never much need for me to do that. It is a part of my game that I am taking very serious though in trying to improve into a good enough shooter to help any team that I am on to use that part of my game.
You’re a guy that can fill the stat sheet with ease, but what do you feel is a hidden strength in your game that doesn’t get noticed right away?
I feel like it proves that I can help a team in many ways. I like to try to affect the game in any way possible and I believe that this is easy to be looked over when a lot of times people look at points only.
On what aspects of your game are you working on this summer to be fully prepared for your rookie season in Germany?
I am working on being as mobile as possible for this season and being as healthy as possible for when I get there. I don’t know much but I know that I have to take care of my body as much as possible.
You played at Wofford (NCAA) from 2014-2019. How vital was it in your basketball development to have had the Wofford experience for five years instead of four years?
Wofford was super important for me they helped me to find out how hard you have to play at the college level to be successful and to push through it all to get what I need out of each season.
You won the SoCon tournament as a freshman and as a fifth year senior. Talk about both titles and how special and different each one was for you?
They felt extremely different though both are extremely cool to be a part of. My first year I was a role player and a freshman as the team was led by some great players. My last season I was one of the upperclassmen so it meant a little bit more to me than the first one.
As a freshman you lost 85-54 to Duke (NCAA) scoring 4 points and 3 rebounds in 7 minutes. Do you have any memories of that game? Duke had a starting 5 of guys that all would go to the NBA like Jahlil Okafor, Tyus Jones, Justise Winslow, Quinn Cook and Amile Jefferson. Were you in awe of playing against Duke or did you have your emotions under control?
I had my emotions completely under control but. I did notice how good Jahlil was. He made the game look pretty easy as he was a freshman. It is cool to see where those guys are now in their careers now.
How special was the 2019 NCAA run? Talk about playing powerhouse Kentucky and giving all you had and just being nipped 62-56. What should the team have done better in the last minutes?
This season was extremely special because this team loved to be around each other and just about every minute of the season was fun. As far as the Kentucky game I think if a couple of shots fell then we would have one the game. The ball didn’t bounce our way though and that is just how it happens some time.
How do you have the battle with Reid Travis in your game in the NCAA in your memories. Does being able to compete with him give you added self confidence that you go up the basketball ladder I the next years and be able to compete at even higher levels than where you are now?
It was cool to play against Reid Travis for a second time in my career. The first time we played he absolutely dominated the matchup. This time I feel like I held my own though. So, it was cool to see how far I had come in 5 years. Things like that help me to see where was and can get to as I continue to progress as a player.
How did head coach Mike Young prepare and groom you best for a professional basketball career?
He taught me what it means to work hard and to never give up. He allowed me to play a game that I am comfortable with at Wofford to propel me into success.
Who won a one on one in practice you or Chevez Goodwin?
Chevy and I battled in practice but most days we didn’t even guard each other. He had a lot of growth over this past season though. He’ll have a great season next year.
Who was the toughest opponent that you played in the NCAA that is in the NBA or in Europe now
I think that the best player that I’ve played against is Marcus Thornton
Please list your five best teammates of all-time?
Please name your personal own NBA Rushmore. Which four heads would you pick past or present for your list?
Shaq, MJ, Kobe, Dr J
What is your personal opinion of the never ending debate of who is the greatest of all-time Michael Jordan or Lebron James?
I think that is hard for me because I was not able to see MJ play as much as Lebron but I do think that MJ is better. I’m not a big fan of this debate though because they are in different eras.
What was the last movie that you saw?
Spiderman Far from Home
Thanks Cameron for the chat.