Gibson is a speedster, who chose Missouri over offers from Arkansas, Indiana, Minnesota, San Diego State, and Vanderbilt, among others. Gibson, who had been committed to Arkansas for months, found himself on the open market, and Missouri snatched him up, in what turned out to be a trade about which the Missouri staff feels good. He's a well-rounded, aggressive cornerback, who also played receiver and handled returns, playing for Coach James Williams.
"It's a relief to be a Missouri Tiger," said Gibson, just before signing day. "Everything went good on the visit. I liked the coaches. And the athletes are more like a family. They were together, tight."
Gibson was a First-Team All-District performer as a senior, when he caught 28 passes for 420 yards and 9 TDs, threw a TD pass, and returned a punt and a kick-off for TDs. He also came up with 2 interceptions.
As a junior, Gibson finished with 20 tackles and 7 pass-break-ups. He missed 5 games after transferring to Marshall from Sharpstown High School, where he registered 90 tackles, 9 interceptions and 7 pass deflections over two seasons.
Gibson, who is the oldest of 10 children, plans to study business at Missouri. His parents are Kendrick Williams and Don Pickens. He cited Missouri's impressive graduation rates as a major factor in his decision to become a Tiger.
Gibson is a sprinter for his school's track team. His personal record in the 100 meters is 10.65 seconds, and he's run a 21.4 second 200 meters. His personal best in the 400 meters is 48.8 seconds.
"I think it's a great situation for him," said Coach Williams, speaking about John Gibson signing with Missouri. "He's a very explosive player. He's an agile player, a legitimate 4.4 kid. He's a very good character kid. He's a quiet kid that loves to play football. He's very respectful, a great kid, and a very coachable young man."
"He's a physical guy," said Coach Williams, talking about what kind of player Missouri is getting in John Gibson. "He played receiver and DB, and he did well at both. He runs very well. He's got long arms. He's got good hips, and he likes to compete out there. He's one of those guys who doesn't mind pressing, and getting in people's face, and competing."
Missouri Assistant Coach Craig Kuligowski was the primary recruiter on John Gibson. He talked about Gibson.
"I'm really happy that John Gibson and Arkansas decided to split ways," said Coach Kuligowski. "He fit a need for us, and I think he has great potential to be a very good cornerback. He's got great change of direction. He's got great speed. He's aggressive. He's got great ball skills. He's an excellent returner. I think the sky's the limit for him. We're excited about him!"
JP's Take: You have to love Gibson's speed! He appears to be a true cover corner, who has good cover skills, ball skills and is physical despite not being the biggest guy on the field. He has very good hands as displayed by his ability playing receiver for his high school team. He also looks like a candidate to add to the mix in the return game.
John Gibson Senior Highlights