Utah's Newest Commit Taking A Different Route

Robert Johnson gave the Utes a verbal commitment for the class of 2011 Monday, but won't make it to campus until 2012...

California running back Robert Johnson comes from a powerhouse program in the Central Valley at Central East in Fresno that features multiple Division 1 prospects, including arguably the top running back in the west in Brendon Bigelow and elite 2012 quarterback prospect Mike Baker. While those two received most of the attention, Johnson continued piling up yards for Central East and the offers started coming in. Once he picked up the offer he wanted, Johnson couldn't help but jump on it immediately.

Utah offered me on Monday and that's when I committed to them," he said, giving his verbal pledge to coach Aaron Alford and making himself the Utes 18th commitment for the 2011 class.

Johnson chose the Utes over offers from the likes of Oregon State, LSU, Fresno State, and Arizona State, among others.

"They're a great school, a great program. Academics-wise it's a great place. The football program is one of the best and I was very interested in the coaches and liked them a lot. They're a hardworking program and I like their offensive strategy."

While he'd like to be on campus for 2011 and contribute to a backfield that desperately needs a power back, Johnson has a few academic hurdles to clear first and won't be arriving until 2012.

"I'll be enrolling at a JC and probably play there for my first year, but I'll be coming in for 2012. If everything goes well, I'll be in for spring ball in 2012."

Coming from a high profile program, Johnson has teammates that are being recruited by Utah and he'd love to play with a current high school teammate. He has a great relationship with current high school teammate and 2012 QB prospect Mike Baker, who is favoring the Utes over multiple west coast school.

"We're teammates so we're pretty tight. We do work out a lot together on the weekends. If I come out and play with Baker it would be great. We have a good chemistry and we know how we play.

While Robert hasn't made a visit out to Utah in the past, he's planning on making an official visit in the coming weeks.

"I'm setting up a trip to go out there to first week of Christmas break."

Johnson reports a 4.48 40 yard dash time while listing himself at 5'11.5" and 210 pounds.

Ute Zone Top Stories