Versatile Indiana Athlete is Commit No. 8 for Buckeyes
By Tony Gerdeman
Lonnie Johnson, a 6-foot-3 180-pound athlete out of Gary, Indiana, committed to the Buckeyes on Sunday, providing one heck of a Mother's Day gift for his mom.
He broke the news via his Twitter account.
Johnson plays receiver, running back and safety for his West Side High School team, and is productive at each spot. He rushed for 756 yards on 75 carries (10.1 avg), caught 31 passes for 778 yards (25.1 avg), and scored 25 combined touchdowns on offense. He also had 32 tackles and four interceptions on defense.
The Buckeyes will likely want Johnson to play receiver, as they are looking for some lengthier pass catchers in this class. Johnson certainly fits that bill, and his athleticism only makes him more effective.
At a Best of the Midwest Combine in Indianapolis this past February, Johnson ran a 4.56 40-yard dash, recorded a 4.23 pro shuttle, and broad-jumped 9'10.5".
Johnson has shown an ability to use his athleticism to go up and catch passes in traffic, and he has the burst to break out of a tackle and get upfield quickly. He has proven to be a difficult matchup for high school players to this point.
The Buckeyes, who were a long-time favorite to land Johnson, beat out Nebraska, Missouri, Kentucky, Illinois, Purdue and Indiana. This marks the fifth year in a row that Ohio State has landed a commitment from the state of Indiana. (2010 - Rod Smith, 2011 - Joel Hale, 2012 - David Perkins, 2013 - Tim Gardner.)
ESPN and 247Sports both rate Johnson a 4-star prospect, while Scout and Rivals currently have him as a 3-star. Scout ranks him their #47 receiver overall; Rivals calls him their #36 athlete; 247Sports has him as the #29 safety; and ESPN rates him as their #41 receiver in the nation.
Scouts believe that Johnson is still somewhat raw, but will polish rather nicely with collegiate coaching.
Johnson may not be the last Hoosier-state receiver to land in Columbus, as the Buckeyes are also after Carmel receiver/tight end Austin Roberts. Roberts is 6-foot-3 and, at 212 pounds, is seen as a very athletic tight end prospect. He recently ran a 4.51 at a Nike combine. He has offers from Alabama, Florida, Ohio State, Louisville, Miami (FL) and Stanford.
Marcelys Jones OG (6-5 325) Glenville (Cleveland, OH)
Damon Webb CB (5-11 180) Cass Tech (Detroit, MI)
Kyle Trout OT (6-6 285) Lancaster (Lancaster, OH)
Parris Campbell RB (6-0 179) St Vincent-St Mary (Akron, OH)
Dylan Thompson DE (6-5 270) Montini Catholic (Lombard, IL)
Sam Hubbard ATH (6-6 225) Moeller (Cincinnati, OH)
Kyle Berger OLB (6-3 205) St. Ignatius (Cleveland, OH)
Lonnie Johnson ATH (6-3 180) West Side (Gary, IN)
Donate by Check :
1380 King Avenue
Columbus, Ohio 43212
Help us bring you more Buckeye coverage. Donate to the-Ozone.
Click here to email this the-Ozone feature to a friend...or even a foe.
(c) 2010 The O-Zone, O-Zone Communications, Inc. All rights reserved.
This material may not be published, rebroadcast,rewritten, or redistributed.