(Charleston, SC ) -- Bulldog catcher Joe Jackson has been selected by the Texas Rangers in the fifth round (160th overall pick) of the 2013 MLB First-Year Player Draft.
Jackson is the first position player taken from The Citadel since catcher Bryan Altman was drafted by the Padres in 2010. The last position player taken higher than Jackson was third baseman Dallas McPherson, who went to the Angels in the second round in 2001.
He is the 28th Bulldog drafted since Fred Jordan became head coach in 1992. McPherson and pitcher Britt Reames, now an assistant coach at The Citadel, both had careers in the major leagues. In addition to those two, first baseman Chris McGuiness, a 13th round pick by the Red Sox in 2009, is scheduled to make his major league debut tonight, coincidentally with the Rangers.
Jackson was the second player drafted from a Southern Conference school. Samford outfielder Phillip Ervin went to the Reds in the first round with the 27th overall pick.
Jackson enjoyed an outstanding junior season that included a berth on the All-SoCon first team, Most Outstanding Player accolades at the conference tournament and a spot on the Louisville Slugger All-America third team as selected by Collegiate Baseball magazine.
Jackson was ranked in the top 10 in the SoCon and top 40 in the nation in 10 statistical categories prior to the start of the NCAA tournament, including second in the league and 25th nationally with a final batting average of .386, a mark that rose 23 points when he went 10-for-13 in The Citadel's run to the championship game of the conference tournament.
He had three doubles, a triple, a game-winning home run against Appalachian State, eight runs scored and five RBI as the Bulldogs won their first three tournament games before dropping a narrow 6-5 decision to Elon in the championship game. Jackson reached base in all but two plate appearances.
The Mauldin, S.C., native led the SoCon and was 11th nationally in on-base percentage (.495) and was second in the conference and eighth in the country in both runs scored (66) and RBI (67).
Jackson's other top statistical marks included 88 hits (third in SoCon, 17th in nation); 19 doubles (3, 39); 43 walks (3, 28); 150 total bases (4, 9); a .658 slugging percentage (4, 16); and 13 home runs (6, 24).
Jackson was particularly hot over the final 14 games of the season in which he went 28-for-48 (.583) with 26 runs scored and 26 RBI, raising his batting average from .333 to its final mark. That performance earned him the SoCon Player of the Month award for May and increased his stock heading into this week's draft.