(The latest in a series of entries following former Maryland fullback Cory Jackson's journey through the process of going from college football to the pros.
For much of Saturday, Cory Jackson hung out with friends and family, eating plenty and waiting for a call.
It didn't come before the NFL Draft wrapped up around 5:30 p.m.
By 6, though, the former Maryland fullback knew his destination: San Diego.
Jackson agreed to a deal to attend the Chargers' mini-camp next weekend. The details have yet to be fully worked out, and Jackson isn't quite sure how extensive this could be.
But for fit and finances, Jackson seems to have a good fit.
"My agent said Cincinnati and the Redskins were interested, but it sounded like we like we were going to get the best deal with San Diego," Jackson said this afternoon after an eventful weekend.
The Chargers were a surprise destination even to Jackson, who started for 3 1/2 seasons at Maryland. San Diego sent a scout to Maryland's pro day, but Jackson said the franchise hadn't confirmed any draft day information in case they needed to get in touch with him.
Nonetheless, he's headed for San Diego --- a place few people find anything to mutter about.
As a guy embarking on a pro career, Jackson certainly won't.
"It'll be a new experience. I was only out in California for the Cal game [in September] and San Francisco for the bowl game," Jackson said. "That was it. I can't complain about it, either. I either wanted to be close to Maryland or West Virginia, or somewhere where it was warm. I got one of the above."
There's also plenty to learn. After playing in college the last four seasons, most of his Sundays were spent resting, receiving treatment and catching up on classwork. When he did sneak some NFL action into his day, he usually tried to watch Pittsburgh (who he grew up rooting for) if at all possible.
Now, though, he's a Charger. The work of the last four months didn't lead to call during the draft, but it still ensured at least an opportunity to continue playing.
And that meant the good far outweighed the bad for Jackson this weekend.
"It was kind of disappointing I didn't get drafted," Jackson said. "But from my position, John Conner [a Kentucky product picked by the New York Jets] was the only one to get drafted. It's not really a mark on me as a player. It has to do with the trends. The nature of my position is it is kind of a dying breed. But there's still a couple of teams that will use us."
For now, Jackson is counting on San Diego being one of them.