Johnson grew up a UCLA fan, but Cal beat the Bruins to the punch with a scholarship offer. Then after visiting UCLA this past weekend, Johnson received an offer from UCLA, complicating matters.
"I had no idea it was going to be this tough to decide between schools. It's funny, a few months ago, recruiting was going real slow, and I had one offer, but it's all worked out and whoever I choose between UCLA and Cal, I can't go wrong," said Johnson.
Johnson first jumped onto the Bruins radar at the Adidas Camp on UCLA's campus in May, and after a strong senior year in which he was named to the All-State team for Nevada, the offers began to roll in.
He visited UCLA officially this last weekend, being hosted by freshman linebacker Fred Holmes. "Fred was real cool. I got a chance to meet all of the recruits and some of the other players there. It was a great trip. I got to see some things that I didn't get to at the Adidas Camp."
Johnson said Cal and UCLA are deadlocked, that he has no leader between the two. Playing in Cal's favor is the fact they offered him strictly as a safety. UCLA, on the other hand, offered him as an athlete, with an influx of safeties coming in. Johnson said, "Basically all of their safeties are coming in as an athlete. The best one plays safety, and the others either move to receiver or cornerback. They talked to me about playing linebacker, too. I'd prefer safety since I'd have to put on more weight to play linebacker and I have a hard time keeping weight on."
Recruited by linebacker coach Brian Schneider, Johnson also got to meet with defensive backs coach Gary De Loach ("he's really cool") and defensive coordinator Larry Kerr. "I got to spend some time with Coach Kerr and learn some stuff from him. I also met with Coach (Karl) Dorrell. He is a real nice guy, really mellow. I like Coach Dorrell."
Johnson expects he'll announce his decision Tuesday afternoon. With the UCLA team just minutes away from his home, practicing for the Las Vegas Bowl, Johnson said he'd call the staff if they are the recipients of his commitment.
He also said, "I do plan to catch some of their practices this week, and I'm going to the Las Vegas Bowl."
He has a 3.5 GPA and scored an 890 on his SAT, which is good enough to qualify academically.