He stood out during Miami’s Paradise Camp two weekends ago, and his public commitment to Miami was the same way.
Defensive end D.J. Johnson didn’t participate in camp but cut an imposing figure on the sidelines, standing 6-foot-5 and 240 pounds and wearing a pair of mirrored shades at night.
When he committed to Miami on Monday, Johnson did it in a unique way: with a video he filmed with his friends (see below).
First, a little about Johnson (whose first name is Deonte):
He plays at Sacramento (Calif.) Burbank High and is rated the No. 7 weakside defensive end by Rivals and No. 8 by 247Sports (that website rates him as the 102nd-best player in the nation).
ESPN rated him much higher: the No. 30 player in the 2017 class, and No. 3 among all defensive ends. ESPN’s scouting report called him a “lengthy edge defender that has the ability to explode off the ball and cover a lot of ground once in motion … those attributes will certainly garner him plenty of attention. … Runs well with impressive range and closing speed off the edge. Explosive first-step and is quick to penetrate and cause disruption in the backfield. Fluid pass rusher who relies on speed. Long arms and frame allow him to stay clean from blockers and stretch runs out to the sideline. Very difficult to outflank and pursue.” Among his areas of weakness? He “tends to play high. Relies on athletic ability over refined technique. Not yet a stout anchor type versus the run.”
Johnson holds offers nearly every major school nationally (Florida and Florida State being noteworthy exceptions).
He had 14.5 sacks, 32 tackles for loss and 87 total tackles last year, in addition to five forced fumbles, three recoveries (three touchdowns, too) and a pair of pass break-ups.
Adding Johnson (the second-highest rated Hurricanes commit according to 247Sports, behind four-star offensive tackle Navaughn Donaldson) boosted Miami up to No. 8 nationally in the recruiting rankings, and first in the ACC ahead of Florida State and Clemson.
Now, the video: