Class Impact: Jamaal Johnson to Miami

Class Impact: Jamaal Johnson to Miami

Stefan Adams
2022 Chaminade-Madonna (FL) DE Jamaal Johnson committed to the Miami Hurricanes on Thursday night, becoming the first commit in his class for UM.




The 6-2 240 pounder currently has no national consensus in the ranking industry, although Johnson is considered a 3-star recruit, the #26 SDE, and the #59 player in the Sunshine State by 247Sports. Miami’s 2022 class does not yet have an overall team ranking according to 247Sports and Rivals.


The Player

Johnson exploded onto the scene in 2018 on a championship-winning Lions team with 8 sacks and 13 TFL as a freshman. It took another strong follow-up season for him to start receiving P5 interest, and the Hurricanes were the second power conference program to offer him a scholarship in late January 2020. Johnson stepped on campus at Miami a week later for UM’s junior day event and was blown away by the visit. From then on, the Canes were in the driver’s seat with Johnson, and it didn’t hurt that the local talent was a lifelong UM fan. After continuing to build a relationship with the staff over the past few months, Johnson decided there was no reason to wait and committed to the Canes last night. He ultimately chose Miami over offers from Ole Miss, Kentucky, Pitt, and West Virginia among others.

On film, Johnson flashes qualities of terrific pass-rusher. Rushes with good dip and lean; has a solid outside-inside move to get offensive tackles off balance and blow by them. If he gets free and locks onto his target, he is relentless in his pursuit of the passer and charges in with ferociousness. Carries his weight well and has good speed, but lacks ideal height. Shows patience and discipline to stay home and keep contain in the run game. Demonstrates strong handwork at the point of attack to disengage from his opponent and cause disruption in the backfield. Advanced at this stage in stacking and shedding blocks to corral the ballcarrier. Shows he is versatile enough to play on the interior in passing downs, something UM loves to do with their ends in the “NASCAR” package. Very productive both seasons of high school as an underclassman on a championship-winning roster both years; comes from a winning program and understands both the structure and work ethic it takes to win at the highest level.

As a sophomore in 2019, Johnson put up 48 tackles, 12 TFL, 8 sacks, and 1 FR.


The Class

Johnson is the first commitment on board for the 2022 class. He will look to be a leader in the class and bring other local prospects along with him. At this juncture, it would be pointless to try and discern the number of defensive ends Miami might take in 2022, but Miami is going to have their pick of some highly talented DE’s next cycle, as South Florida looks to be loaded at the position.

You have to begin any discussion on the DE’s with Monsignor Pace (FL) 5-star Shemar Stewart, who not only is considered the top DE in the state, but is the #1 DE in the country and #2 overall player in the nation. Some see LSU with the early lead for Stewart, and the defending champion Tigers are certainly going to have to be contended with, but Stewart has been high on the Hurricanes since they were one of the first schools to offer him a year and a half ago and the Pace star has visited campus multiples times since. I wouldn’t count Miami out of this yet as they continue to push hard for Stewart.

While Stewart is setting the bar for local DE’s at this point, there are a few that aren’t far behind. Johnson’s teammate in 4-star Kenyatta Jackson is next up on the wish list as a prospect that sits just outside the top 50 overall nationally. Johnson already told CIS that Jackson is his top target to get into UM’s 2022 class with him, but Jackson made clear recently that he would not be making any early decisions and plans to wait until his senior year to commit. Sources close to the recruitment tell CIS that Jackson is currently leaning towards leaving the area for college, which is not surprising considering he has offers from everywhere; Ohio State and Clemson are thought to be prime competition. Still, Miami hopes the strong relationship with Johnson and showing improvement within the program in 2020 will help convince Jackson to stay home over the next few months.

Another trio of local 4-stars are being considered priorities by the Miami staff, and they are Miami Edison’s Francois Nolton, American Heritage’s Marvin Jones Jr., and Homestead’s Dante Anderson. At one point, Nolton was in the running to be UM’s first commitment, as he has made no secret of his love for the home team and told CIS he originally planned to decide by the end of this summer. However, the coronavirus shutdowns changed his plans since he has been unable to make visits, plus LSU has been making a strong push with Ed Orgeron taking a personal interest in Nolton.

Marvin Jones Jr. is an FSU legacy where his father played, and the Noles are probably the early favorite, but Jones Jr. is one player that could be influenced by the James Williams to Miami news; the two are teammates at Heritage and Jones Jr. made it clear he noticed the move on social media. Not much is known about the recruitment of Anderson at the moment, although he did grow up an LSU fan and recently landed an offer from the Tigers. Miami was one of the first schools to offer Anderson after a standout performance at a Manny Diaz summer camp on campus last June.

Deerfield Beach (FL) 4-star Richard Thomas is very high on both Miami and FSU in the early going, and looks like a candidate to potentially move inside down the line. Dillard (FL) 3-star Nyjalik Kelly is another intriguing option to keep an eye on; Kelly has an early UM offer but could make himself into a take if he continues to develop.


The Team

Miami will lose Quincy Roche to graduation at the position following 2020, and Gregory Rousseau will certainly consider leaving early for the NFL if he continues his assault on ACC quarterbacks. Even if Rousseau does jump early, the Canes have recruited very strongly at DE in recent years and have really been stacking some serious talent, with guys like Jaelan Phillips, Jahfari Harvey, and Chantz Williams waiting in the wings to potentially become the next great UM pass rusher.

The Canes have a ton of depth at DE and Johnson doesn’t necessarily profile as a prospect who will demand immediate playing time. Add in the fact that Chaminade doesn’t allow players to enroll early for spring, and you’re looking at a likely redshirt here. Still, down the line, Johnson has the look of a rotational contributor throughout his career, with his upside coming in as a pass rushing specialist, or an athletic interior presence if he continues to grow.

 

Comments (9)

Do we have a Stewart-James Williams connect via pace?
 
I know Stewart is the must have but it sounds like DE is as deep a position in the state as any other currently. If we can land 2-4* DE’s we’ll continue to stack chips at the position.
 
Do we have a Stewart-James Williams connect via pace?
God i hope so. But positive things are being said in regards to DVD and Pace as well as the fact that this kid is a 5 star and has not left Pace. Thats a good sign. Also williams left Pace to go to American Heritage and then to western and then back to AH
 
Stewart sounds like a Myles Garrett type of dude. Get him, Kenyatta, and another couple of dudes to load up. No settling for Plan Bs.
 
God i hope so. But positive things are being said in regards to DVD and Pace as well as the fact that this kid is a 5 star and has not left Pace. Thats a good sign. Also williams left Pace to go to American Heritage and then to western and then back to AH
good point! I forgot DVD went to pace as well. Hoping that connect pulls another stud!

yeah, I know JW bounced all over the place but since he went to pace, I’m guessing he and Stewart are connected Somehow (maybe neighborhood, etc).
 
If we can win games and play great D...

We gonna clean up recruiting. The defense is gonna be nasty for years to come!
 
Stewart sounds like a Myles Garrett type of dude. Get him, Kenyatta, and another couple of dudes to load up. No settling for Plan Bs.
This is why im leaning to not taking Davis this cycle. Give his spot to Chase Smith, more versatility.
 

2021 Commits

S
6'5"
220
Fort Lauderdale, FL
DT
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255
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295
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DT
6'4"
290
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DE
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WR
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RB
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225
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210
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S
5'11"
200
Miami, FL
WR
5'11"
160
Fort Lauderdale, FL

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