December 10, 2012

Johnson has a leader

Hutchinson Community College (Hutchinson, Kan.) defensive lineman Toby Johnson has been at or near the top of Georgia's recruiting board for quite some time now.

On Friday, the four-star defensive lineman made the trip back to his home state for an official visit to UGA for the annual Senior Gala event.

According to Johnson, the visit went about as well as he could have imagined.

"It was great. I had a great time," said Johnson. "It was the atmosphere and the player and the coaches. Man, the coaches were great. I thought Tennessee's coaches were great but Georgia's coaches were amazing."

In most years, the gala weekend has been one where the Bulldogs have hosted a number of high profile recruits, but this year was different as Johnson was the only uncommitted prospect in attendance.

That allowed the Georgia players, coaches, and recruits to give Johnson the majority of their attention.

"Since I was the only uncommitted guy there, I got to spend time with a lot of people," said Johnson. "I was hosted by pretty much the whole defense. We just hung out and had a real good time."

Before his official visit, Johnson told UGASports that one thing he was looking forward to was getting to know the whole Georgia coaching staff.

That opportunity was realized this past weekend according to the Georgia native.

"Yeah, I got to spend time and meet all the coaches," he said. "It was great getting to meet all of them. They are a really cool group."

When asked to rate the visit, Johnson gave it the highest of high marks.

"I would give it a 10," said Johnson. "I've been to other campuses and they have all treated me great and I had a great time, but this one was different. Georgia was by far the best visit I have been on."

Just over a month ago, the JUCO defender sustained an ACL injury to his knee and many wondered if schools would stick with him after such a serious injury.

Georgia was one of the many schools that did continue to prioritize Johnson, but he says that his injury wasn't discussed on his visit to the Classic City.

"They (the coaches) didn't talk to me much at all about it, really," said Johnson. "The trainer took a look at it and checked it out, and we talked a little bit about the work out plan they want me on, but that was it really."

Prior to his official visit, Johnson informed UGASports that he would no longer be an early enrollee and would do most of his rehab while still at Hutchinson.

Now that he doesn't have to make a decision in time to enroll early, the question remains as to when Johnson will wrap up his recruitment.

"I am probably going to take a couple more visits before I decide," said Johnson. "I mean, my uncle and folks from back home are in my ear about UGA, and I'm going to take more visits because these schools stuck with me through my injury and I told them I would visit. But it is going to be hard not to pick Georgia because it just felt like home for me and the coaches were so great."

With all of that said, is it safe to consider Georgia as Johnson's leader at this time?"

"Yeah, you can say that they (UGA) is my leader," said Johnson.

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