Toby Johnson: UGA DT target recovers from knee injury

Toby Johnson, the nation’s No. 1-ranked JC player, was in good spirits on Wednesday night after an awful start to the week.

No. 1-ranked JC prospect, Toby Johnson (247sports)

No. 1-ranked JC prospect, Toby Johnson (247sports)

This past weekend, the 6-foot-4, 310-pound defensive tackle from Hutchinson junior college suffered a season-ending injury in the first round of the playoffs. Johnson was initially diagnosed with a tear in the ACL and MCL of his right knee, and was scheduled to undergo an MRI on Thursday.

After a rough few days dealing with the disappointment of the injury, Johnson got on his crutches and attended his school’s basketball game on Wednesday night.

“I’m doing better, I’m doing better,” said Johnson, who is one of the top remaining targets on UGA’s board for 2013.

Since the injury, Johnson has been bombarded by phone calls from colleges.

“They all called to let me know that I still had a scholarship and stuff, and they want me to rehab good,” Johnson said. “Hopefully, I can come back strong for next season. But if not, I still got a red-shirt season left.”

Georgia was about the only one of his main schools that he had yet to hear from this week.

“I haven’t talked to Coach Mark Richt,” Johnson said. “I’ve talked to Tennessee, Mississippi State, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Miami … I’ve talked to everybody but Georgia. They usually call sometime during the week. They’re going to call later, I’m sure.”

Despite the injury, Johnson still plans to enroll in the college of his choice in January. He hopes to play next season, but still has a redshirt season available, giving him three seasons to play two – if his knee is not fully recovered by the summer.

What’s the latest with recruiting? Johnson has only taken one official visit, touring Oklahoma, and “knows for a fact” that he will take recruiting trips to both UGA and Tennessee.

What about the remaining two? “I’m looking pretty much at everybody who has been sticking with me since day one, and who has stuck with me through this,” he said. “People are still hollering at me, saying I should come to their school and that they’d help me through rehab. Nobody has really given up on me.”

Johnson graduated from Atlanta’s Banneker High School.

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63 comments Add your comment

7576DAWG

November 8th, 2012
2:59 am

I would take a chance on him. Johnson didn’t become the number 1 prospect by just being big. This is the reason that I think Georgia needs to retire Rodney Garner. Garner should have been one of the first recruiters to call him and reassure him that Georgia still wants him. Garner is the defensive line coach for goodness sake. Then Richt could follow up Garners call . Georgia really does need a better Defensive line coach and especially a better Recruiting Coordinator. Replacing Garner would be my top priority at least as Recruiting Coordinator.

Poopdawg

November 8th, 2012
4:50 am

Good luck Toby .

Old Boy

November 8th, 2012
5:21 am

Michael, how many years of eligibility will he have? Does he have the ability to redshirt a year?

Destin Dawg

November 8th, 2012
5:49 am

Old Boy… 2 years + red shirt… make Bo Bo recruiting Coordinator… Go Dawgs beat Auburn !!

Dewnsav

November 8th, 2012
6:13 am

no story…UGA will call….go dogs

Buzz2011

November 8th, 2012
7:01 am

Richt lost his number.

DOG2

November 8th, 2012
7:12 am

Buzz 2011< you lost your def cord, your AD and a whole bunch of games, the nerds are a joke!

Vampire Bill

November 8th, 2012
7:26 am

Ritchty don’t lose that number.. hahaha sorry… had to

RedandBlackDAWG

November 8th, 2012
7:50 am

CMR will call him, and if he comes to the school, they will red shirt him so he can rehabilitate. The scholarship numbers are there to allow it, and the young man has a bright future.

Just Saying

November 8th, 2012
7:50 am

7576 – if it weren’t for Garner Georgia wouldn’t be on the radar. Garner has been involved with the young man since his 10th grade of HS. Garner has a strong relationship with TJ and it is mutual. Isn’t it obvious the headline to this story is I tended to mislead. Rodney Garner has been in constant contact with TJ for two years incl visits to his Juco games. CRG is not the issue with recruiting. As the RC he is not personally responsible for recruiting each individual prospect, each coach has a geographical area to which they are assigned. Do you understand the job of RC? It appears not based on your post and previous one’s. Last I inquired Dawgs were in excellent shape with TJ.

Chris Mike

November 8th, 2012
8:04 am

Why do it take so long for UGA to do things. Its obvisious that this guy want to be a Dog, he just want ot hear from UGA. Gardner don’t let this guy slip away, he has a redshirt left.

Billy O

November 8th, 2012
8:05 am

Everbody knows that CMR has never withdrawn a sholly offer after an injury. He will not withdraw it for TJ either. If he has an offer from bama, on the other hand, TJ can forget that one.

Bammer

November 8th, 2012
8:36 am

Right Billy O…you forget about Kelsey Griffin? Hypocrite.

Saint Richt

November 8th, 2012
8:37 am

Billy O…you forget about Kelsey Griffin? Hypocrite.

RHall55

November 8th, 2012
8:41 am

Chris Mike…I agree that many times it takes UGA too long to make a move…then they regret it…trying to win the recruit back after the recruit has committed to someone else!! But Chris Mike…know your Coach’s names: it is Garner…and yes, it is time for him to retire!!!

KD

November 8th, 2012
8:41 am

This is why UGA missess out on recruits, Richt should have called him right away to let him know they were sorry about his injury and were still interested in him, Saban would have.

Flo - Ri - Duh

November 8th, 2012
8:41 am

DawgByte

November 8th, 2012
8:59 am

I hate to say this for Toby’s sake, but UGA has wasted too many scholarships on guys who’ve been injured. In the SEC, every scholarship is worth its weight in gold… Mark Richt needs to take pass on Toby. Sorry, but that’s life.

kybodawg

November 8th, 2012
9:32 am

hey mark want me to call him for you?

Mike Bobo

November 8th, 2012
9:40 am

hey kid…would you like to play TE at UGA?

SomehereinGA

November 8th, 2012
9:47 am

Garner has taken some big steps backwards in the recruiting wars….not as good as he once was…not nearly. There is a reason why UGA limits him to the Atlanta area now…he has po’d several coaches. Close friend of mine goes to our church….has an SEC championship ring on his finger. He tells me there is no more racist man in the coaching ranks than Garner…might be time to let him explore other employment options.

John L. Smith

November 8th, 2012
9:50 am

I see Toby likes to SMILE!

chaz

November 8th, 2012
10:05 am

UGA would be a LOT better off with a new OC and Bobo reassigned to recruiting. Garner needs to be phased out and UGA seems to have started that process. Bobo is a terrible OC.

Bam

November 8th, 2012
10:12 am

If he wants to be a Dawg that bad, he should have committed by now. GA need help on the D-line next year. If he can’t play then who fault is that. I won’t blame them for not calling. These kids need to stop playing games. Same with kamara. Ga is only signing one running back this, but these kids are prolonging their recuitment. I say go back after Green and be done with these primodonnas.

Baloneyismyfirstname!

November 8th, 2012
10:13 am

The team is stacked with talent and he d line is stout…explain to me how Garner is slipping

DawgFaithful

November 8th, 2012
10:37 am

Chaz and every other negative UGA fan,

Mike Bobo DOES do a lot of recruiting. They make a plan for recruiting each year and they divide their board of prospects up among the coaches to recruit individually. Bobo has been responsible for signing some really good recruits in his tenure. As far as him being a terrible OC… UGA is leading the NCAA in yds/play this year. Oregon is #2 in that stat. Let me repeat that. We are averaging more yds/play than Oregon! We’re scoring 40+ points/game. It’s the highest points/game average in UGA history and you want to fire him? That doesn’t even make sense.

Also if you followed the program even half way closely you would know that this April UGA hired a “Director of Off campus recruiting” that actually took a lot of responsibility away from Garner so he can focus more on coaching.

I’m not really sure why so many people seem to think that UGA is slipping in recruiting. The last 2 years in a row we have signed the top 2 players in our state and last year we signed the #2 player in Florida to go with them. This year we will sign 4 of the top 10 players in the state and we turned one of those away because we are after bigger fish. We also are the favorite to sign Laremy Tunsil who is the #1 player in Florida. Hello!! The “Dream Team” from 2 yrs ago was awesome. Those kids are all over the field for us right now. Malcolm Mitchell, Damian Swann, Amarlo Herrera etc etc. Crowell was in that group too. Nick marshall was in that class and we had to kick him out of school but he’s killing it at a JUCO in Kansas now. So we’re getting the pick of the litter of top talent in the state. With Alabama and Auburn coming in it is impossible to get every kid. We are doing a great job of holding our own here. Last years class included guys that are all over the field as well. Keith Marshall, Theus, Gurley, Jordan Jenkins ect ect. You could argue that we need to do a better job of evaluating Oline talent but we’ve had a lot of attrition at that position and sometimes you miss on kids. Every school does. Other than that i’d say we’re doing pretty well. I saw where Hugh Freeze said yesterday that our defense is the biggest, fastest and most talented with more NFL players than any other defense they have faced this year. Mel Kiper and Todd Mcshay agree. Keep in mind they have faced Alabama already. If recruiting is busted and we’re missing on kids, how could this be?

Corch March Rich

November 8th, 2012
11:04 am

Somebody please tell me when his birthday is so I can call him and sing happy birthday to him!

Next years scheduling planner

November 8th, 2012
11:05 am

We gona need deese boys after postin next years shedule.

DawgFaithful

November 8th, 2012
11:07 am

Oh BTW, we’ll stiff offer Toby Johnson and we should. Kids are rehabbing quickly from these types of injuries these days. We’ve got plenty of scholarships open right now. He’s 3 years to play 2. Not a lot of risk here.

molar roller

November 8th, 2012
11:39 am

We gona need deese boys after postin next years shedule.
+++++++++++++++++++++
suddenly an average schedule become difficult….if Georgia played LSU’s schedule for the last three years, Richt would not be coaching at Georgia this year…

molar roller

November 8th, 2012
11:41 am

stop recruiting private school o-linemen and things should improve.

molar roller

November 8th, 2012
11:42 am

Hugh Freeze hasn’t faced LSU yet…

deebow

November 8th, 2012
11:42 am

Just heard RN decommitted from Clempsun!!! Think Dawgs have a shot???

RiffRaff

November 8th, 2012
12:17 pm

deebow – if he did decommit he will probably end up at Ole Miss.

nobody

November 8th, 2012
12:24 pm

Why are comments closed on all Nkemdiche articles?

Dawg-Gawn

November 8th, 2012
12:33 pm

UGA’s Bryan McClendon will be in attendance at the Grayson game tomorrow night… so there is more to this story that has not leaked out yet!

Nkemdiche de-committed from Clemson last Sunday (per Mickey Conn) not today!

“BELIEVE” in the “G”

Bulldogs for Muschamp Lifetime Contract

November 8th, 2012
12:35 pm

RN decommits from clemson.

BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Now what happens to the other 5 guys in the wheelbarrow? They all going to Ole Miss?

Dabo=EMBARRASSED

All you Clemson idiots—WE TOLD YOU IT WAS A BAD IDEA!!!!!!!!!!!!

BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Shady

November 8th, 2012
12:54 pm

I smell something funny here!

Reality Check

November 8th, 2012
12:57 pm

Ah, another Junior College kid for UGA. Did they ever recruit/sign legitimate student-athletes?

ugab

November 8th, 2012
1:04 pm

There is not excuse for Uga not calling this recruit. Garner has needed to go for a long time. The DL plays patty cake to much. If ga is to scared to get rid of Garner, then just give him another title. Assistant don’t want to leave Uga coach. Assistant stay out of the way please.

Old Boy

November 8th, 2012
1:06 pm

We missed out on RN when we didn’t recruit his brother, the freshman that almost single-handedly kept them in the game for the first half. I know people are down on them, but they have worked out pretty well for UGA lately. Even without his brother, I would have liked to have a player like Denzel on the team. Considering we have less recruited scholarship players than USC, who has been on probation, we should have found a place for him. If nothing else, he would have been a ST demon.

Old Boy

November 8th, 2012
1:08 pm

I used way too many ‘them’s that I didn’t explain. The first ‘them’ was Ole Miss and the second ‘them’ was package deals.

59bulldawg

November 8th, 2012
2:03 pm

I hope he won’t be a casualty of only a limited number of Bulldawg schollys to give! If he’s the number 1 JC prospect I say go get him if we have room. Even if he doesn’t play next season, it would mean extra time to get acclimated to academic life while he learning Grantham’s system.

59bulldawg

November 8th, 2012
2:03 pm

I hope he won’t be a casualty of only a limited number of Bulldawg schollys to give! If he’s the number 1 JC prospect I say go get him if we have room. Even if he doesn’t play next season, it would mean extra time to get acclimated to academic life while he learning Grantham’s system.

G-Dawg

November 8th, 2012
2:06 pm

Take a redshirt like JJ did.

DABO

November 8th, 2012
2:55 pm

We still RAID this State!

SEC

November 8th, 2012
3:01 pm

Election protest at Ole Miss. had racial overtones, prompts “unity” vigil in response.

http://www.wmctv.com/story/20025451/riots-brew-on-ole-miss-campus#.UJwCvlGTX1t.email

Dewayne

November 8th, 2012
5:52 pm

Bammer and Saint Richt apparently you can’t read. He said after an injury not because he wanted to!!! Learn to read and comprehend before typing!!

Dawg-Gawn

November 8th, 2012
7:06 pm

Latest word on the recruiting trail:

Montravius Adams girlfriend has now decided to attend UGA, his mom liked coach Mark Richt and her visit so much that she now considers UGA to be her favorite place for her son! Both Montravius and his mom will be visiting at this Saturday’s game in Clemson SC… we will have to wait to see how that visit goes.

Something is up with R Nkemdiche and UGA… coach Richt has been burning the phone up, all week long with Momma Nkemdiche… along with two Ole Miss coaches deployed from Oxford, MS Bryan McClendon will also be attending the Grayson game Friday night.

Another secret, Branden Langley’s current girlfriend is also attending UGA so with his buddy Quincy Mauger already committed to UGA … no way Langley signs with USCe… he is flipping!

“Stick with Richt”

“Our Team” “Our Time” “No Regrets”

“BELIEVE” in the “G”

Really?

November 8th, 2012
7:16 pm

Toby Johnson will make a DGD and I look forward to seeing him play for the Bulldogs.

Robert Nkemdiche is a real class act just like his brother. I guess on the ajc it’s only okay to insult and spew vitriol about players that play for Georgia.