"I committed," Johnson said. "It was just great. I like the campus, the academics and the football program. I committed to Coach (Karl) Dorrell Sunday morning at breakfast. I was just really impressed."
Johnson said that UCLA had been recruiting him since before his season and officially offered him about a month ago. He also had an offer from Tulane, and was getting interest from Mississippi and Michigan State. He had an official visit to Tulane planned for January but now says he won't take it.
How did UCLA hook up with Johnson? "It was coach (Eric) Bieniemy. He's been recruiting me. I think he knew about me last spring."
Johnson played primarily defensive tackle for Curtis, which is one of the best high school programs in the state, having won 18 state championships. They lost in the state finals this year. Johnson, who had 60 tackles and 5 sacks for the season, was named all district and all-region.
Johnson also confirmed that his teammate, linebacker Fred Holmes, also verbally committed to UCLA while on his official visit this weekend.
Another teammate, offensive line prospect Aaron Meyer, has been a UCLA target for some time. Johnson said that he and Holmes will now start recruiting Meyer pretty heavily themselves. "I just got home late last night," Johnson said. "But I'm going to call Aaron today and start recruiting him."
Johnson said he has a 2.8 GPA and scored a 19 on the ACT.