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Tuesday, July 24, 2012
Juco DT Toby Johnson ready to see OU

By Bob Przybylo

The college football season is fast approaching, but junior college defensive tackle Toby Johnson (Hutchinson, Kan./Hutchinson CC) has one more visit he wants to make before focusing on his season.

Johnson is going to make that visit Wednesday when he sees the Oklahoma campus for the first time.

As important as seeing the campus and meeting the coaches is for Johnson, there is something else he is concerned about during the visit.

“I want a chance to meet the academic advisers and see if they have my major and how they can help me there,” Johnson said. “I want to get into sports broadcasting after my career is over.”

Johnson, who is 6-foot-4 and 290 pounds, is among the top juco prospects in the nation and has offers from more than 25 schools, including Boise State, Georgia, Nebraska, Texas A&M, Tennessee and West Virginia.

He is coming off a visit to Nebraska last weekend that he said went well. He has also seen Arkansas and Tennessee this summer.

At this point, however, Johnson is still taking things in and doesn’t have a solid list of top schools.

“I don’t have any favorites,” said Johnson, who played high school football at Banneker High School in College Park, Ga. “What I’m looking at is playing time at the schools I could attend. I want to know how the coaching staff is going to help me make plays and get the exposure I need to make the [NFL].”

Defensive tackle has been a sore spot so far for OU’s 2013 class. The Sooners are in the running for ESPN 150 tackle Justin Manning (Dallas/Kimball) but have been on the outside looking in with some other top targets.

It is Johnson’s size that might help him get noticed, but it’s something else entirely that Johnson thinks is what sets him apart.

“I think a lot of people underestimate how fast I am. I’m very quick coming off the line and can make a lot of plays,” Johnson said.

Johnson said he doesn’t expect to commit to the Sooners on Wednesday, but he is happy to close out his summer visits.

“It will be nice to go back to work and thinking about the season and making it the best we can make it moving forward,” Johnson said.