PRATTVILLE, Al. — Jim Harbaugh has stirred up a great deal of commotion on behalf of his nine-day, 10-camp “Summer Swarm Tour.” So far, this tour has proven extremely successful and it is just three days old.
As a budding senior at Prattville High, Johnson has been in contact with the Michigan staff for some time before working out in front of the maize and blue coaches on Friday. In fact, Johnson took an unofficial visit to Ann Arbor last weekend and spoke highly of his time in Michigan.
“It was pretty good,” Johnson said. “I kept in contact with them after we talked the first time. I took a visit up there and we just spent a couple days up there getting to know everybody, all the coaches, just spending time with them. I toured the campus and I loved the campus. Everything is right there for you and its pretty nice.”
In terms of his relationship with the Wolverines’ staff, Johnson says that two members stand out above the rest in terms of instrumental personnel that helped secure his commitment.
While Alabama is a considerable distance from Michigan’s headquarters in Ann Arbor, the maize and blue deployed Director of Player Personnel Chris Partridge and running back coach Tyrone Wheatley to help Johnson grow comfortable with UM.
“I think coach Partridge [really helped] because I talked with him more and coach Wheatley,” Johnson said. “They are really good guys. They are good coaches and they helped me out a lot.”
During his trip to Michigan, Johnson was able to take in the coaches’ approach in a non-football environment. On Friday, Johnson had the opportunity to observe the Michigan staff within a coaching context, and the 6-foot, 215-pound linebacker came away impressed.
“They love what they do,” Johnson said. “They put their effort and time into it. They just want us to get better and to achieve our goals.”
In addition to the dedication that the Michigan staff has shown to campers, the Wolverines’ staff maintained a stringent focus on the scholastic side of being a Michigan football player.
“The academics,” Johnson said of what the UM coaches stress. “They have a lot of people to help you, but they already told me everything on the visit. The academics, they have tutors and stuff that help you through school so you wont be alone. They have everything for you set up and planned out so you have help along the way.”
While Johnson has issued his verbal pledge to the Michigan staff, the powerful linebacker is planning to keep his options open. When asked if he will take visits to other schools than Michigan in the future, Johnson was expedient in his response.
“Yes sir,” Johnson said. “I plan on it. I plan on other schools. I’m not going to change my commitment, but I’m still going to take visits.”
Which schools Johnson plans to visit, however, are still yet to be decided as the rising prospect continues to broaden his recruiting horizon.
“ I don’t know yet,” Johnson said in terms of his official visits. “I’m still debating about it. I know I’m gong to go somewhere, but I don’t know where.”
Over the past few months, Johnson has been participating in baseball for his high school. During this time, Johnson has focused on getting stronger before the start of his senior season.
“I’m staying in shape and getting ready for the next year because we had a lot of people leaving,” Johnson said. “So we need to get ready. We should be able to. We have a lot of upcoming sophomores that really can help us out. We should be good.”
Click here for a link to Johnson’s junior highlight tape.