2018 OLB/S Brian Johnson (© Greg Powers)

Versatile 2018 Defender Brian Johnson Recaps Visit to Florida

Brian Johnson, the No. 6 outside linebacker in Texas for 2018, recaps his weekend visit to Florida.

Brian Johnson assembled a strong junior season for Houston-area powerhouse Manvel High School and now holds 15 FBS offers, including eight from Power Five conference teams.

Florida is one school he hopes to add to that list. Johnson -- a three-star, position-versatile outside linebacker/safety prospect -- visited the Gators this past weekend.

"Loved the atmosphere of the school," said Johnson, who made his first visit to The Swamp. "They showed me a lot of love there. Would love to go back."


Johnson said he spent time with receivers coach Kerry Dixon II, linebackers coach Tim Skipper, and head coach Jim McElwain. Given Johnson's long, lean frame at 6-foot-2, 183 pounds, he's not the traditional outside linebacker prospect, though he possesses ample frame space to add bulk.

His long wingspan and unique frame, combined with impressive athleticism, make Johnson an intriguing defensive prospect.

"Coach Skip said I can play a lot of spots on the defense," Johnson said. "An outside linebacker that can cover the No. 2 receiver and also who can play the run. And he said he can see me (playing) back at safety."

Johnson's offers include Arizona State, Baylor, Louisville, Missouri, Oklahoma State, West Virginia, SMU, Indiana, and Iowa State, among others.

Though Florida has not yet offered, the Gators sit well with Johnson.

"After visiting UF, it stands high," he said. "I really loved everything about it. In my heart I think an offer should be coming very soon. Coach Skip said he wants to see what I can do in person, so he will be coming to our spring practice to check me out."

As a junior this past fall, Johnson helped Manvel to a 13-1 record and a Texas Class 5A Division I state quarterfinals appearance. He recorded 62 tackles, six tackles for loss, three sacks, one interception, two forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries, one fumble return touchdown, and seven pass breakups.

Johnson debuted as a sophomore, when he registered 59 tackles for a Manvel squad that went 11-3 with a Texas Class 6A Division II state quarterfinals appearance.

Johnson said he does not yet have plans for more visits. He now will concentrate on spring football as he prepares for his senior season.

"Become a better leader," Johnson said of his offseason goals, "getting my footwork better, and getting stronger."

Fightin Gators Top Stories