West Virginia running backs coach Chad Scott recently offered 2021 running back prospect Justin Johnson Jr out of Edwardsville, Illinois.
“I’m just very appreciative that coach Chad took the time to talk to me and believed in me enough to offer me,” said Johnson. “I think that West Virginia is an amazing program, especially considering the stats that Coach Scott was telling me about. The 14th most-winning program in the country and a large number of players they have sent to the NFL is great. I can definitely see myself in that program.”
He also reflected on one of West Virginia’s all-time greats. “Tavon Austin is definitely a player that stood out to me,” continued Johnson. “I admire his speed, agility, elusiveness and the way he played the game.”
Along with West Virginia, he holds offers from Purdue, Illinois, Temple, and Illinois State.
The 6’0” 200-pound Johnson battled an ankle injury this year and as a result, missed some playing time but was able to come back and finish out the year.
“This past season was great, we made it to the second round of the playoffs,” said Johnson. “Unfortunately, I missed three games in the regular season, due to a sprained ankle, but I came back healthy and finished strong. I finished with 1,300 rushing yards and 20 touchdowns.”
“The best part of my game is just the fact that I’m versatile,” continued Johnson. “I’m not strictly a running back, I can do multiple things like catching out of the backfield, running between the tackles, spreading to wideout, etc.”
Johnson is versatile but he’s smooth coming out of the backfield. He’s tough inside the tackles, setting up blocks, breaking and/or juking defenders before bouncing it outside for a big play. He looks to be fundamentally sound running the football.
His hometown of Edwardsville, Illinois is 30 miles outside of St. Louis. Johnson says that the distance isn’t a problem and went into what he’s looking for at the next level.
“I’m looking for a school with a good engineering program and a school that uses their running backs in multiple ways. I also must have a great relationship with the coaching staff,” stated Johnson.
Justin is looking to make his first visit to Morgantown in January.