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31 DAYS TO 2021 KICKOFF: Jahron McPherson

In which BracketCat counts down the 31st day until the 2021 kickoff with a profile of Kansas State defensive back Jahron McPherson.

#31 Jahron McPherson
Second only to Skylar Thompson’s return in importance to the 2021 Wildcats was starting defensive back Jahron McPherson’s (31) decision to come back for a second senior season.
Photo by Peter G. Aiken/Getty Images

NOTE: Kansas State has elected to advance players’ classification even though the 2020 season did not affect eligibility. Those who wish to take advantage of this extra year will be listed as a (“super”) senior again after their original eligibility would have been exhausted.

#31 Jahron McPherson

Redshirt Super Senior | 6-1 | 200 lbs. | Basehor, Kansas
Jahron McPherson
Jahron McPherson
Courtesy Kansas State Athletics
  • Position: Defensive Back
  • Previous College: Butler Community College
  • Projection: Starter
  • Status: On Scholarship

Jahron Lee McPherson (b. Dec. 21, 1997) is a versatile nickel back who will look to continue leading the secondary in 2021 after starting in 23 total games over the past three seasons.

McPherson graduated in fall 2020 with a bachelor of science degree in sociology and now is pursuing his master’s degree.

He redshirted during the 2017 season after playing one year at the community college level.

McPherson then played in 10 games in 2018 and drew one start against Kansas, finishing the season with 19 tackles, two pass breakups and an interception.

He carded a career-high four tackles at Oklahoma, his interception at West Virginia and both of his pass breakups at TCU, and also had three tackles against Kansas and Iowa State.

McPherson then played in 13 games in 2019, with 12 starts at nickel back, finishing fifth on the team with 36 tackles to go along with a tackle for loss and an interception.

He registered a career-high six tackles at Mississippi State, a game in which he tallied his first career tackle for loss, and picked off his second career pass at Kansas.

McPherson had five stops in the regular-season finale against Iowa State and four tackles apiece against Nicholls, Oklahoma State, and Navy.

He started 10 games at safety in 2020 and was an honorable mention All-Big 12 selection by the league’s coaches after leading the team with 54 tackles to go along with 3.5 tackles for loss, a sack, two interceptions, five total passes defended and a forced fumble.

McPherson had a banner day in K-State’s win at No. 3 Oklahoma when he had a career-high 11 tackles — including one for a loss — and then forced a fumble that K-State recovered and nabbed an interception in the fourth quarter to seal the win.

He was the first Wildcat since 2002 (Bryan Hickman vs. Iowa State) to have double-digit tackles, a tackle for loss, an interception and a forced fumble in the same game.

McPherson was named the Walter Camp National Defensive Player of the Week, Nagurski Trophy Player of the Week, Thorpe Award Player of the Week and Big 12 Defensive Player of the Week following his legendary performance against the Sooners.

He came back with eight tackles and an interception the next week against Texas Tech, while he also had eight tackles at West Virginia and seven against Oklahoma State.

McPherson logged his first career sack at Baylor, a game in which he tied his career high with two passes defended. He was voted a team captain in 2020 and likely again in 2021.

McPherson prepped at Basehor-Linwood High School under head coach Rod Stallbaumer, helping the Bobcats to earn a 7-3 record and a district championship as a senior.

He picked up first-team all-state honors as a senior from The Topeka Capital-Journal and The Wichita Eagle, while he earned honorable mention accolades as a junior.

McPherson played in the Kansas vs. Missouri All-Star Game following his senior year. He also played basketball and ran track during his prep career.

McPherson played in three games during his freshman season at Butler under head coach Tim Schaffner and was a JUCO teammate of former Wildcats Chris Dugan and Justin Eichman, as well as fellow super senior and starter Noah Johnson.

He had tackles against Coffeyville and Fort Scott, plus a pass breakup in the latter contest.