Big Athlete Getting Lots Of Attention

In January some of the top junior prospects in the country converged on San Antonio, Tex., for the U.S. Army All-Star Combine held at the AlamoDome. While names like offensive lineman Andre Smith and wide receiver Percy Harvin were the big draws, one of the players who caught the eye of onlookers was massive running back/linebacker Micah Johnson from Fort Campbell High School.

A 6-1, 270 athlete who ran a 4.9 second 40-yard dash on a slow track, Johnson was easy to pick out among the hundreds of players in attendance because of his footwork and athletic ability. Showing his skills in front of those on hand was something that Johnson said he had been looking forward to all year and he is grateful for the chance to shine.

"It was a good experience," Johnson says. "Just getting the chance to see the competition and compete against other high quality athletes, I enjoyed myself. It gave me a chance to see where I stand and areas I need to improve on like speed and explosiveness. That's what I'm going to go home and do.

"My desire is really to play linebacker right now and I'm a little overweight. I know if I get any bigger and slower I'm going to play defensive tackle. I just want to make sure I keep up my speed and do everything and more a linebacker can do."

A two-way player who is a problem for opponents on both sides of the ball, Johnson was strong as a junior when he rushed for over 1,200 yards and scored 17 touchdowns in just six games. Much of that yardage came in the last three games of the season when he switched to running back from fullback.

He also made 173 tackles on defense and notes that he rarely played in the second half of games because his team was usually holding a big lead at intermission.

In the second round of the playoffs, Johnson had a day most players only dream about having. On 28 carries he rushed for 310 yards and two touchdowns, leading his team to the victory. He also added 17 tackles on defense.

Expected to be a four-year starter, Johnson first started at West Potomac High School in Virginia in Fairfax County. He transferred to Fort Campbell two years ago. His play has drawn attention from schools all over the country such as USC, who first noticed him as a ninth-grader in Virginia. He said that right now the Trojans are on his list along with dozens and dozens of schools, most of whom are in the South.

"At this point there are probably too many schools," Johnson says. "It's not like I can pinpoint certain things about a school because I'm not sure yet. I like a lot of different schools. I have offers from Louisville, Kentucky and Maryland already. I have been hearing a lot from Notre Dame, Michigan, Florida State, USC, West Virginia, North Carolina and Wake Forest as well as some others including Auburn, Tennessee and Georgia."

This summer Johnson says he plans to showcase his abilities at as many camps as possible.

"My team goes to the UK camp," Johnson says. "I know it's a definite that I'll go there. Really I'm definitely going to go to another combine to see how much my times have improved. Then I'm not sure what camps I'll go to after that. I'll just have to see."

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