Fall camp has opened up for Manvel (Texas) and Taiwan Johnson couldn't be happier. The 6-foot-3 and 230-pound Johnson says that he has been looking forward to getting back on the field with his team.
"It feels good," Johnson said. "I have looked forward to getting back out there with my team knowing that there is a camaraderie that we share and just working hard every day."
Johnson finished up his junior year satisfied with how he played, but he knew that he could get better. Two areas that he was really working on during the summer were his upper body strength and speed.
"I wanted to improve in my upper body strength. I felt like I was strong last year and did good, but I felt like I was a little bit stronger that I would be better with some more strength up top.
"I wanted to get faster overall too. My 40-time has improved through the summer. I really felt like things went well for me this summer with my workouts."
Recently Johnson started trimming his list and naming leaders. He is sitting on a top five right now and he said out of those five there are some key things that will set those teams apart.
"My top schools are Nebraska, Arkansas, Rice, SMU and Oklahoma State. I am looking at the atmosphere of the campus and the students. I want to look at the transition and how difficult it's going to be to go from high school, little town to college."
The Huskers will get a chance to impress Johnson are their biggest out of conference weekend. Johnson says beyond just getting out of the state he's looking forward to seeing Nebraska's big game day environment, meeting the coaches and the players.
"I set up a visit to see Nebraska on September 17th for the Washington game. I am looking forward to just getting out to Texas. I haven't been past Arkansas in my whole life beyond coming from California.
"I want to experience and game day atmosphere at a big school like Nebraska because I know that it's going to be crazy. I know that their fans will be nuts in a big game.
"I am looking forward to seeing how the coaches treat me, meeting the players and just how they go about getting ready for a game. I want to take it all in. It's an honor to take these visits."
Johnson has been dealing with two coaches primarily from Nebraska; one coach recruits the position and the other recruits the area. Johnson knows that it's going to be big for him to go to a school where the position coach can produce NFL caliber talent.
"Coach John Papuchis and Coach Rich Fisher have been recruiting me for Nebraska. The one thing that stands out to me the most about the Nebraska staff is that they are great people and they care about me and how things are going personally.
"They are guys that know how to get the job done, especially Coach J.P. He knows how to develop players along the defensive line for the next level. Playing for someone of his caliber is really important to me."