Los Angeles (Calif.) Augustus Hawkins offense hurried to the line. A quick scan of the defense showed quarterback Dylan Lemle there was a mismatch on the left side. The defense hadn’t lined up properly, leaving two receivers on the left side with only one cornerback.
The Los Angeles (Calif.) Hamilton safety had no chance.
“I feel like I'm one of the best players in the nation,” Johnson said. “That’s in my head. No matter who is in front of me, I'm going to try to beat them every time and I beat him.”
Johnson hesitated for a half second, freezing the defender flat-footed. He then burst to the outside and shook free of an arm tackle attempt to spring himself and set up a foot race, which none of the defenders were capable of competing. He cruised down the sideline along the field dashes and then erupted in emotion after crossing the goal line.
“I was excited. That's my first touchdown in my last, first game of the season for my high school career,” Johnson said. “That's what football does to you, you know what I'm saying? Football just makes you find them emotions out of nowhere.”
One of the few seniors on a roster loaded with Division I prospects, Johnson is one of the team’s leaders whether it be by his words or his actions. While on the sidelines, he has placed upon himself responsibilities of motivating his teammates and keeping the bench players focused on the game.
Johnson is locked in on the season, but college coaches are locked in on Johnson. Though he committed to Arizona on March 1, Johnson is still hearing from other universities that have seen his versatility playing cornerback, running back, receiver and kick returner. He listed USC, Notre Dame and California as three schools that are still coming hard after him.
“But 100 percent committed to Arizona,” Johnson said. “Everything seems right to me. Coaching staff. Players that's also committed are really good people, friends and stuff like that. I feel like we will be a good team in the next couple of years.”
Johnson may be 100 percent committed, but he’s not 100 percent done with the recruiting process. He still has plans for official visits after he takes the SAT and ACT and makes sure his test scores are good for admissions. After the official visits, a re-evaluation of his commitment could happen, but Johnson said it has been so long since he’s been on another campus that he isn’t sure how he will react.
It is likely that Johnson will make a trip up to USC even if it is just for an unofficial visit.
“They press hard. Coach [Clay] Helton, I talk to him every now and then. He sort of reminds me that they want me and stuff like that. I guess I am a priority for them, but I'm really not sure.”
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