Player Spotlight: Keeon Johnson

As a sophomore, Keeon Johnson, out of Kannapolis-A.L. Brown, N.C, put himself on the map with a 29.9 yards per catch average on a team that went 12-2 and to the third round of the North Carolina 3AA playoffs. He also scored big at a combine held in Charlotte where he was awarded wide receiver MVP and fastest man. Johnson is currently up to four college offers.


"This year has been going really well," said Keeon Johnson. "We're passing more than we normally do. We're at about to start off the playoffs as the No. 3 seed. Out first game is Wednesday with Ledford."

The Brown Wonders went 9-1 in the regular season winning the South Piedmont Conference. Johnson is averaging 21.3 yards per catch with 10 touchdowns. He had big games in wins against Rocky River (five receptions for 111 yards and two touchdowns) and Hickory Ridge (six receptions for 135 yards and three touchdowns).

"This year I'm playing the game more physically," Johnson said. "I've improved with my downfield blocking. I think I'm good as both a deep threat and getting the ball in the flat. Most of my touchdowns though have come on deep balls."

Brown lost to Charlotte Catholic in the playoff game last year, and Johnson had six catches for 106 yards including a 56-yard touchdown. Unfortunately for the Wonders, that would be their only score of the game. The game caught the eye of a few college recruiters.

Johnson holds scholarship offers from North Carolina, North Carolina State, East Carolina, and Duke. Wake Forest, Clemson, and South Carolina are also expressing serious interest in the 6-foot-3, 198-pound prospect.

"I've been to games at UNC, Clemson, Wake Forest and this [past] week I'm going to N.C. State for the UNC game," said Johnson.

"I was at Wake Forest for the Florida State game. They beat the Seminoles, so everybody was hyped. It seemed like a nice place to go to school. I talked with Coach (Lonnie) Galloway while I was there. I'm hoping to go to games at South Carolina and ECU before the season ends."

Some Demon Deacons fans may remember Dustin Abercrombie, a Brown alumni who played at Wake Forest from 2002 to 2005. Recently the schools top players have been choosing UNC. The Tar Heels landed Travis Riley in their 2011 class and have a commitment from Damien Washington in this year's class. While Johnson is high on UNC, going to Chapel Hill may not necessarily be where he ends up.

"The one thing I'm going to look hard at is the school offering the best classes for my major, Pre-Med," said Johnson. "I want to go somewhere I can play. I don't want to sit on the sidelines. Location is important. I'd like to be a couple hours away from home."

Johnson plans to be in Phoenix, Ariz. after the season the week of the Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl where he'll compete in the Proving Ground Combine. He'll play for the Brown basketball and track teams this winter and spring.

Johnson has an older brother, T.J. Johnson, who is a sophomore wide receiver at UNC-Pembroke. T.J.'s 2008 team as a senior at Brown made it to the 3AA State championship game.

Keeon Johnson thinks his team can make it that far too if they "stay focused." Johnson wears No. 19 for the Wonders.

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