Zach attack on shelf

Zach Johnson is a 6-9, 255-pound center prospect from Sacramento (Calif.) Natomas, and Zach verbally committed to Washington in late January. He hasn't been able to play basketball recently, as a knee injury sidelined him in December, but he's doing what he can to make sure he makes it to Montlake this summer ready to be a Husky. He also admits to being frustrated being on the shelf.

"It's hard," Johnson told "I've been at home two weeks in bed and I just have to fight through it. I want to be playing because my team is undefeated in league and they get to play in Arco Arena and I can't play. I just get to watch."

Zach recounts the day - December 2nd - to be exact. That makes both knees now, as Zach hurt his ACL in his other knee in April. "I had surgery February 12th," said Johnson. "I tore my ACL. I think they cut it and gave me a new one. I'll start physical therapy this coming Tuesday. I'll be going once a week to see the doctor and then I'll do whatever he tells me at home until I go to Washington and then they take care of me from there."

His commitment is just a verbal one at this point, but Zach expects to sign a letter of intent in April. "I've been watching them, for sure," said Johnson. "I think they are doing good now. Out of the last eleven games they've only lost two. I think they are doing really good. They just stepped it up. Everybody on the team is doing good now, even the players coming off the bench."

Does he get a chance to talk to the Huskies coaches at all? "I talk to 'em," Zach said. "I'll text-message Coach (Cameron) Dollar every once in a while, like after games. I tell him, 'Good game coach.' (laughs)

"They keep telling me to keep up with my grades, pass that SAT and they'll see me this summer."

It appears unrealistic to think Johnson will be ready this fall to contribute, and Zach is thinking long-term anyways. "I think I'll redshirt my first year and just rehab my knees, condition and stuff and then next season I'll be ready to go," he said.

He doesn't feel great about getting hurt, but it's just the opposite when he talks about his college choice. "I feel good about it," Zach said. "I feel I made the right choice. I know Romar and Dollar are good coaches, I know they are going to take care of me. I'm anxious to get there, I can't wait to get up there."

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