3-star TE Theo Johnson isn’t your ordinary recruiting prospect.
Hailing from Ontario, Canada, the 6’5” 235 pound Johnson has had to work just a little bit harder to get noticed and taken seriously as a legitimate D-I recruit here in the states. After a 2018 summer camp tour that included long road trips to Miami and Penn State, Johnson found himself with Power 5 offers from PSU, Boston College, and Syracuse, along with a host of Group of 5 programs. Even though the Canes liked his game when he camped in Coral Gables, they held off on offering the Holy Names High star. That changed last week, when UM finally pulled the trigger on Johnson, and it seems he will be a high-priority target from here on out.
“I was at the gym working out and coach (Todd) Hartley called me and told me that they were going to be offering me a scholarship,” Johnson said. “He said that they liked me since the second the saw me and that he is going to recruit the crap out of me to get me down there.”
With a Miami offer now in hand, Johnson says the Canes are certainly in heavy contention to land his services and he is aware of the UM tradition at tight end.
“It felt pretty great to get the offer,” Johnson said. “Especially considering the talent that they have produced over the years at tight end. I’m interested in learning more about the program and their facilities for sure.”
The Canes have been looking for a second tight end to pair with Larry Hodges in the 2019 class, but it appears Johnson won’t be that guy. While it was on the table that Johnson might classify as a 2019 recruit and sign in February, he says he’s made the decision to go ahead and officially make himself part of the 2020 class.
“I’ve decided I’m going to classify as a 2020 recruit, but I haven’t made it official yet in the clearinghouse,” Johnson said. “I just need to call in and let them know I’m going to be a 2020 recruit.”
As stated, Johnson made his way down to Miami over the summer for one of Mark Richt’s summer camps. Even though he only spent a short time on campus, Johnson feels that UM definitely gave off a different vibe than some of their northern counterparts.
“Well, I was only down for just over 24 hours, so I didn’t really get to see much outside of the football building,” Johnson said of Miami. “It was a different feeling from some of the places I’ve been to more north. But I liked how it was nothing like I’ve really experienced before and I’m looking forward to learning more about the campus and getting a feel for the school and football program.”
To make sure the coaching staff knows Johnson is serious about Miami, he is planning on making another long trip down south in the next few months to continue to learn about the school and build relationships with the coaches.
“Yeah, I’m definitely going to try and get down sometime this spring for sure,” Johnson said.
Schools such as Penn State, Syracuse, Boston College, and Cincinnati are some of the suitors coming after Johnson hard right now, but with his talent level, that list could easily grow over the next year as more programs become aware of the Canadian tight end. It’s clear big factors in Johnson’s final choice will be the environment at that particular school, as well as fit in the offensive system.
“When it comes time to make a decision, I will be looking for a school that is the right fit for me in every aspect,” Johnson said. “A place where I can see myself excelling both on and off the football field. I’m also looking at the offense and how they do things and if I could see myself thriving in that particular offensive scheme.”