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March 21, 2013Jah'Shawn Johnson is one of those athletes where Division I coaches love him but can't decide exactly where he fits.
Some think defensive back. Others believe wide receiver. With Baylor, the coaching staff is targeting him in the secondary. Johnson (5-10, 170) was on the Baylor campus for the Feb. 2 junior day, returned a couple of weeks ago and could return soon for another visit. Johnson spoke with his recruiter Jeff Lebby earlier this week.
"He was just saying that they wanted me to get back down there,'' Johnson said. "They thought I was mature and that I had everything they needed. They think I could get on the field pretty quick if I work hard at it and make them believe I can do it. For sure, I'll be there for the spring game [April 6].''
That in and of itself should clearly define Baylor's interests. Baylor is trying to create a pipeline into Ellis County. The Bears have already secured the commitment of teammate, running back Terence Williams.
By adding Johnson, it would be a big get for the secondary. What likely wants to avoid is Johnson traveling to Stillwater, OK and visit Oklahoma State for its April 28 spring game.
Johnson plays both ways for the Lions. He specialized as a slot receiver. The Cowboys could be close to offering as could Kansas. Johnson is already holding offers from the Bears, TCU, Tulsa and Washington.
As a defensive back, he was hawkish and earned the coaching staff's trust by playing man or man free coverage. There's a reason for that. He's run track and his personal best in the 100 is a 10.5. That probably would have advanced to the 2012 Class 4A Region II track meet but he strained a hamstring.
"I think my speed is my big strength and people like the way I come downhill,'' Johnson said. "I try not to get burned. But sometimes, it happens to the best of us. But I'm spending my offseason doing everything I can to get faster and do some more work so I can turn my hips faster. You need it when you play back there.''
Johnson said this is the time for him to continue to evaluate his college choices and is not ready to commit. But stranger things have happened. Ennis will be starting its spring season either April 22 or April 29 depending on what happens with the boys track team.