Friday, October 28, 2016

For Jeremy Johnson, his path brings him back to WVU one last time

Jeremy Johnson gazetteRemember the name Jeremy Johnson? Johnson was a highly recruited four star dual-threat quarterback out of Silsbee, Texas in the 2010 recruiting class. To refresh your memory a little more, he signed in the same class as Barry Brunetti. Johnson was the ninth rated dual-threat quarterback out of high school that season and had chosen the Mountaineers over schools such as Arizona, Baylor, and Michigan to name a few. However, Johson along with BrunettiĀ ended up leaving WVU, in part due to Geno Smith being the obvious signal caller for the Mountaineers.

Brunetti transferred to Ole Miss and had a decent collegiate career but Johnson seemed to fall of the map. After leaving WVU Johnson enrolled at Lamar. Unfortunately he sustained an injury that sidelined him. Johnson would eventually transfer to Blinn Community College in an attempt to obtain an associates degree to become eligible to transfer back to a division one school. Johnson had yet another setback though as he tore his ACL his first season at Blinn.

Johnson would eventually graduate from Blinn with an associates degree and made the decision to stay close to home and walk on at Houston. Again though Johnson sustained another knee injury and was forced to sit out.

Seemingly defeated Johnson had given up on his collegiate football career, that is until University of Charleston recruiting coordinator, David Hill, contacted him. According to Hill, Johnson was working at a Radio Shack when he reached out to the once prominent dual-threat quarterback. Hill stated he simply asked Johnson, “Do you want to come back to the Mountain State?”

Eager for one last chance and because of his affection for the state of West Virginia Johnson accepted the offer.

Johnson would return to football and took a redshirt at UC for the 2014 season. After being granted his sixth year of eligibility from the NCAA Johnson became the starting quarterback for Charleston.

Johnson has always loved West Virginia, even after parting ways with the state’s flagship university. He would even eventually take in a game in Morgantown this past season, a game in which he states numerous people remembered him as he walked through the concourse.

As the starting quarterback for the Golden Eagles in 2015 Johnson completed 58% of his passes accumulating 2,170 passing yards with 17 touchdown passes against only four interceptions. Johnson also remained a dual-threat, accumulating 577 rushing yards on 106 carries. He also added eight rushing touchdowns.

While his stats do not necessarily jump off the page his speed is another story. At a junior day event at the University of Charleston NFL scouts had the chance to see Johnson run. Johnson’s low 4.3 40 time caught the eye of NFL scouts in attendance.Johnson’s physical attributes and his ability to avoid bad throws (only 4 INTS to 17 TD’s in 2015) has caught the eyes of numerous NFL teams. According to Hill, over 25 different NFL teams set foot in Charleston during the 2015 season to see Johnson play after his speed was documented in the NFL scouting database.

Soon after the season Hill was contacted by the Buffalo Bills inquiring about Johnson. Upon informing the Bills that the University of Charleston would not have a pro day Hill was asked which was the closest school participating. Hill informed the Bills that WVU would be having a pro day event. According the Hill the Bills contacted WVU asked that Johnson participate to which the Mountaineers obliged.

So now, 6 years after first stepping foot on campus for the first time at WVU Johnson will return. This time as a potential NFL prospect and part of the Mountaineers pro day.

Featured photo courtesy