The evaluation period is about to begin and things are on the verge of getting significantly more hectic when it comes to college football recruiting, but that doesn’t mean that the Syracuse football staff has been sitting on its hands since spring practice ended. One of the most recent offers for the Orange went to running back Davion Johnson, a teammate of incoming safety Evan Foster and a quickly rising prospect in his own right.
Johnson, at 6-feet, 195 pounds, has a very similar style to another Syracuse target in the class of 2017, Weston Bridges. Along with having good size for a rising senior, Johnson also has a nice blend of speed and quickness. One of the things that really jumps out in watching him is his ability to accelerate past defenders once he picks a hole and turns upfield. Watching his highlights, a good number of his plays are slow developing stretch plays, but once he finds a hole he hits it hard and fast.
Running back is certainly going to be a big area for this recruiting cycle, with Johnson joining Bridges and Tayon Fleet-Davis, among others, as highly sought after targets. That Johnson, who is flying slightly under the radar right now, received such an early offer is a testament to how highly the staff thinks of his ability.
Johnson shows some nice footwork and balance to go along with his speed, and last season the West Bloomfield, Michigan ball carrier earned All-Conference recognition. So far he’s garnered offers from Ball State, Toledo, Miami (Ohio), and Iowa State in addition to Syracuse. Expect the offers to keep rolling in, however, as more coaches get a look at his particular blend of size and speed (he claims a 4.49 time in the 40, per his HUDL). Scout currently rates him as a 3-star prospect and one of the top running back prospects in the Midwest.
Syracuse is likely to take multiple running backs this cycle, with Fleet-Davis being more of a power back while players like Johnson and Bridges will be look at more as the lightning to his thunder.