Overbrook senior Tymir Jackson was overcome with emotion as he took his last lap around the football field after the final practice of the season.

Jackson, who transferred from Simon Gratz to Overbrook after his sophomore year, thought about his past and future during the traditional last lap for the seniors. He didn't have to worry about the present.

That's because the 5-foot-11, 180-pound speedster broke the program's single-season record for rushing yards this year.

"Just seeing the younger players, knowing I'm not going to be here next year, knowing I may not be able to make the games next year, and not being able to see Coach Rendell [Ivory] as much," Jackson said of his flood of feelings. "It's just a lot right now."

Jackson broke the rushing record when he racked up 199 yards and two touchdowns against Boys' Latin on Oct. 26. He broke the previous record of 1,051 yards set by 2008 graduate Darius Johnson, who went on to play at Valley Forge Military Academy and Temple.

In June 2016, Johnson died after a shooting in West Philadelphia.

Jackson, who also runs track, made the transition from wide receiver to quarterback this year because of the lack of a true passer on the roster. The Panthers implemented a Wildcat offense to utilize Jackson's speed.

"I already knew Tymir was going to do some good things this season," Ivory said. "As a coach, I was just trying to put him in the best situation possible."

Jackson finished with 1,190 rushing yards and 11 touchdowns this season.
TOM GRALISH / Staff Photographer
Jackson finished with 1,190 rushing yards and 11 touchdowns this season.

Watching Jackson break the record was special for Ivory, who was an assistant coach when Johnson played for Overbrook.

"That was a sentimental feeling knowing Darius isn't with us anymore," Ivory said.

Jackson finished the 2018 season with 1,190 rushing yards and 11 touchdowns to go with four passing touchdowns. He also returned a kick and a punt for touchdowns. As a defensive back, Jackson had five interceptions. The Panthers went winless and lost to Boys' Latin in the Public League Class 4A quarterfinals.

Jackson also excelled on the track during last spring's outdoor season. He set a personal best of 22.04 seconds in the 200-meter dash at the PIAA state championships in May, and he ran on Overbrook's 4×100 relay team that competed at the Penn Relays.

Deworski Odom, track and field coach at Overbrook, played a key role in Jackson's success on the track, Jackson said. Like Jackson, Odom ran track and played football for the Panthers.

Odom, who was inducted into the Overbrook Hall of Fame last year, was a sensational sprinter and hurdler who set national high school records in the 55 meters, 60 meters, and 60-meter hurdles at the 1995 NSI Championships in Syracuse.

As for track this season and in college, Jackson is keeping his options open. But he wants to compete in both sports in college.

"He pushed me to the limit," Jackson said of Odom.