April 20, 2010

Johnson looking to prove five-star ability

At this weekend's NIKE Football Training Camp on the campus of LSU, there were a number of high-profile prospects on hand, including several LSU commitments. One prospect that was noticeably missing on the day was Anthony Johnson, one of the top defensive line prospects in the country.

Those on hand would know if Johnson was present. In fact, the 6-foot-4, 298-pounder dominated the same camp at the same site as a freshman in high school. Don't take his absence as Johnson shying away from competition though. The five-star candidate plans on making an appearance a few more times at competitive venues before the start of his senior year.

"I'm attending Camps at Texas, the USC Rising Stars Camp, and the Alabama Nike camp," Johnson said on Monday. "I'm going after that number one spot. I've worked hard since my ninth grade year to get the top spot so I'm going out after it."

Johnson has already changed his commitment once, previously committing to Tennessee and then following his recruiting coach Frank Wilson to LSU. With plans to camp at at least two other programs this summer, is Johnson's recruitment still open?

"I'm open," he said. "LSU is real solid but I'm still open to other Universities. It's Texas, USC, Alabama, Oklahoma, basically all the top teams in the country."

Don't misunderstand the big defender though. As long as things stay as they are, it would be very difficult to lead Johnson away from his home-state program.

"My thing that would probably get me out of that commitment is the losing of the whole coaching staff," he said. "Les Miles is a great guy. Me and my 2011 class from Louisiana, we want to stay together and make this a great class and dominate."

As impressive as Johnson has been on the field and in camps, there is always room for improvement.

"One thing I'm trying to perfect right now is my technique," he said. "I have to work on my hands a little bit more. I play with a reckless abandon but my technique is the main thing I'm focused on."

That reckless abandon mixed with elite size and athleticism has been a nightmare for Louisiana offensive linemen over the past three seasons. As a freshman, Johnson broke the sack record at O.P Walker High School. He hasn't slowed down since then.

With his senior year approaching, Johnson has some extremely high expectations for himself.

"This year, I need seven more sacks to break the state record and I'm trying to get that the first two games," he said. "I also want to get the Gatorade Player of the Year and I want to be the top athlete in college football."



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