Fresno (Calif.) cornerback Jaylon Johnson has the bravado many have come to expect from the defensive back position.
But chatty, confident cornerbacks occupy a relative space. Johnson is the younger brother of UCLA cornerback Johnny Johnson. In his day as a recruit, Johnny was known as one of the best trash talkers on the camp circuit.
His aggressiveness at the line of scrimmage stunned most wide receivers looking for a clean release off the line of scrimmage. Jaylon, two inches taller than his big brother, says the extra size give him extra swag.
“My game is similar in a lot of ways to his,” said Johnson. “The trash talking… that’s always going to be there. We both have the competitiveness and aggressiveness in not wanting to lose.
“We have that same attitude, but I can definitely make more plays than he can cause of my size. You get more opportunities when you can make more plays.”
Although that’s something his brother may or may not agree with, colleges all over the country see Johnson as a top prospect. In addition to having a scholarship offer from USC, Oklahoma and Florida have both notably come hard after Johnson.
Saturday, Johnson made his first trip to see USC in person.
“It was good,” said Johnson. “I got to see all of the players in action, and the covers they have on the team. I got to meet all of the coaches too, so that was cool.
“It was my first trip to USC, but I didn’t really get to see the school itself. I was just at practice.”
Johnson shadowed new Trojans defensive back coach Ronnie Bradford during the team’s scrimmage at the Coliseum.
“I could definitely see myself playing at USC, just watching their corners,” said Johnson. “The coaches just want me to come in and make an impact early.
“That’s mainly what they’ve been saying. They like my size, and I feel like I’m versatile. I can cover different types of receivers. I think that’s what sets me apart. I can cover tall, big receivers or smaller quick receivers.”
While Johnson has some big scholarship offers to consider, he is nowhere near narrowing his focus on a potential commitment.
“I’m taking my time and not worried about favorites or top schools,” said Johnson.
Johnson was impressed with USC and says the trip gives him all the more reason to consider the Trojans football program going forward.
“The thing I like about USC is the history and the fact that they put a lot of people in the NFL,” said Johnson. “That’s something I want to pursue and they give me they best chance to do that.”