Shared experience helps KeiVarae Russell learn from Bennett Jackson

Shared experience helps KeiVarae Russell learn from Bennett Jackson
November 22, 2013, 5:00 pm
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SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- KeiVarae Russell and Bennett Jackson have started opposite each other at cornerback in each of Notre Dame's last 23 games, though that streak only has at most three games left.

Both Russell and Jackson came to Notre Dame as offensive players but were switched to cornerback, and with Jackson two years Russell's senior he became an invaluable resource last August.

"He actually understood what I was going through," Russell said. "I had major struggles last summer; I didn't know what I was doing. I'm still having struggles now. But when I go to him, he went through the exact same struggles."

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Russell credited Jackson with helping that transition to a defensive mindset -- namely, relating to hitting/tackling -- and helping him along with his technique.

And off the field, Russell said Jackson was there to help him balance being a starting cornerback with schoolwork and all the other stuff that comes along with being at Notre Dame.

"That's like my big brother," Russell said.