MDC Focus: Gary Johnson

TENNESSEE, TN--Playing without a few bench players and their head coach, Houston Hoops still managed to make it to the quarterfinals, at the Nike Memorial Day Classic, behind strong play by Jai Lucas and 6-6 205-pound Gary Johnson.

Throughout the weekend Johnson showed strong post moves and athleticism that was unmatched by most defenders. Another area where Johnson stood out was in the clutch. In the Hoops first pool play game Johnson went baseline and hit the game wining lay-up.

"I caught the ball and I was bout to shoot it, but he was guarding my shot so I just took it base line," Johnson said. "I knew he'd been blocking shots all game, he had like 6, so I knew if I'd shot it he would have blocked it so I used the backboard on the drive."

But that wasn't the only shot he hit in the clutch. In a three overtime game against The Family, Johnson scored four points in each of the first two overtimes before fouling out. One of his buckets was a great move in the post where he turned and dunked on a defender giving his team a four point lead.

"I'm a little bit more physical at this stage," Johnson said about his game. "I feel like if I really need a basket I can take it inside."

That's one reason college coaches have been all over Johnson. He's tough, athletic and he plays as hard as anyone in high school basketball. At this point the schools that he is hearing from, and likes, are Texas, Arizona, Kentucky, Duke, Connecticut and North Carolina.

However, that isn't his final list of schools. Originally he had a final five, but he has opened his recruitment up to all schools.

"I wanted to give others a chance," Johnson said at the Memorial Day Classic. "It's still the same and everyone is equal. And to tell you the truth I haven't really been thinking about it lately."

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