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KNOXVILLE -- Lane Kiffin's loss was Tennessee's gain.

Defensive end Malik Jackson said Monday night that he would transfer from Southern California to UT to complete his final two seasons of college football eligibility.

Jackson, who will move to Knoxville this week and enroll in summer classes, will be eligible immediately because of Southern Cal's recent NCAA probation and two-year bowl ban.

The 6-foot-4, 270-pound California native had 18 tackles, 3.5 sacks and one forced fumble last season for the Trojans.

"I just decided Tennessee was a better situation for me," said Jackson, who visited Knoxville last month. "I really like Coach (Derek) Dooley and his staff."

Coach Kiffin left UT after last season, taking four assistant coaches with him to Los Angeles. The NCAA hadn't released findings from its Southern Cal investigation at that point.

Jackson is big enough to play defensive tackle and might be moved there at some point, but Volunteers coaches told him he'd initially line up at end.

"It doesn't matter," Jackson said. "I just want to be on the field."

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