Will Johnson was going to be one of the anchors of last year’s Lake Orion (MI) football team. As a junior, the 6-4 280-lb. lineman had 11 sacks. However, a bad hit to the knee before the season even started forced him to make his contributions from the sideline. Despite his obvious disappointment, he maintained his involvement with the team by being present at almost every practice and beside his teammates for every game. His other non-school time was devoted to his rehab regiment and preparing for his future football days as a Wolverine. Will indicated last night that everything is going as scheduled.
“It’s going pretty good,” Will said speaking of the rehab process. “I’m probably 85-90%. I can run now and will be doing more as the summer goes on.” He has worked out frequently with current and future teammate Roger Allison, and has incorporated as much of Michigan’s workout program as he could into his routine. He mentioned that there shouldn’t be many limitations in working out with the other players and that he would be on campus very shortly. “I’ll be going down for all of the informal workouts,” Johnson said.
Though he is both an excellent offensive and defensive line prospect, Will mentioned that the plan is still for him to line up at defensive tackle. He may be ready to go in the fall, but the versatile lineman wasn’t at all opposed to redshirting. “They recruited me as a defensive tackle and I’m still slated to play there,” Johnson said. “I’ll play if they need me, but I’m perfectly okay with redshirting.”
It’s more probable that he’ll spend the season learning in practice and not playing games…especially after not playing a down during his senior year. Johnson himself indicated as much in an earlier interview with the insiders, and suggested that his development wouldn’t be stunted as a result. “It’s not going to hurt me since I was going to red-shirt anyhow,” Johnson said in the interview regarding not playing last season.
A year to get re-acclimated to the day-to-day grind and pounding that comes with being a college football player is the most likely scenario.