"He watched practice, enjoyed the (UT-South Carolina) football game, said he had a great time," Gaines told InsideTennessee. "He said there was a lot of intensity in practice, guys getting after it. And he said they treated him terrifically."
"Eric's a sophomore. Physically, for that grade, he's got the body of a senior," Gaines said. "Everybody is amazed at how athletic he is for such a young kid. We've found that he has tremendous poise for a young guy, too. We're really excited about his three years here at Christ School.
"He has a lot of intangibles — a very athletic young man but has great sense of how to play the game, and you want that in your point guard. He has a very even-keel temperament, understands how to get others involved, and you often don't find that in a sophomore."
Johnson played varsity ball as a freshman at Kestrel Heights in Durham last year, averaging a reported 18 points and 5 assists per game. He has since transferred to Christ School, located 230 miles from his hometown.
In addition to his skills as a playmaker, Johnson is quite a shooter.
"He's got a great 3-point stroke," Gaines said. "We shoot a lot of 3s, and he fits right in with our best shooters. He doesn't force anything. The best part about Eric is that he lets the game come to him. I want the guy who's going to have the ball to have that kind of temperament."
Gaines described his team's offense as "uptempo," adding: "We've averaged 84 or 85 points per game the last four or five years. We shoot between 25 and 30 3-pointers per game. Two years ago we set a national high school record for 3s in a season."
Johnson's defense is a little spotty but that should develop as he matures.
"Like most high school kids, he'll get better," Gaines said. "It's got a ways to go. The physical ability is there, though."