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Sunday, December 4, 2011
Marcus Johnson commits to Texas

By William Wilkerson
HornsNation

AUSTIN, Texas -- High three-star wide receiver Marcus Johnson (League City, Texas/Clear Springs) became the Longhorns 21st commitment for their 2012 class Sunday afternoon.

"The biggest thing was, it is my dream school," Johnson said. "Since I was a little kid, I have always liked Texas. It really is a dream come true. It is an honor to have this opportunity to play for them."

Marcus Johnson
Marcus Johnson had 12 touchdowns during his senior season at Clear Springs.

Johnson, who was offered on Tuesday, called Texas coach Mack Brown and co-offensive coordinator Major Applewhite to inform them of his decision.

"Coach Brown was excited," Johnson said. "He said he was happy for me. He said that he had seen my film and liked the fact that I was a detailed threat, I played wildcat. As a receiver he feels like I can bring a lot to the program."

Johnson said he was taken aback by the conversation.

"When it is going on you don't even realize he is such a busy man and a great coach," he said. "You see Texas and you think Mack Brown. When you are talking to him, it was just surreal."

Johnson (6-foot-1, 180 pounds) originally committed to Texas Tech in June. In November, he switched his pledge from the Red Raiders to Texas A&M. But Johnson put himself back on the market on Friday after the Aggies fired head coach Mike Sherman.

"I sat down and thought about it and I know this will be my very last decision," Johnson said. "I'm not going anywhere else. I have always loved Texas. Through all of it I found some place where my heart was fully into it. I think the A&M situation, my heart wasn't in it. I had to make the right decision for myself, and that was to go to my dream school."

Johnson is the second receiver in three days to commit to Texas. Four-star recruit Kendall Sanders (Athens, Texas/Athens) joined the Longhorns' class on Friday. He had recently de-committed from Oklahoma State.

Texas now has four receivers coming to Austin next season. Johnson and Sanders will join long-time commitments Cayleb Jones (Austin, Texas/Stephen F. Austin) and Thomas Johnson (Dallas, Texas/Skyline, who are rated as the No. 3 and No. 4 receivers in the country respectively by ESPNU.

Johnson is extremely excited about the possibilities this group of receivers will bring to Austin.

"This is a great recruiting class," Johnson said. "They are all great players. Once we get up there we have to stay focused and keep working hard. I think we can do big things at Texas."

Johnson might not be the as highly touted a recruit as the latter two, but he put up numbers in his senior season that warranted his 78 scout grade, which puts him right underneath the four-star benchmark of 79.5.

He caught 63 passes for 1,169 yards (18.4 average) and 11 touchdowns, and had 30 rushes for 352 yards (11.7 average) and another score. He also returned kicks and punts.

Johnson posted a 4.51 40-yard dash, 4.41 20-yard shuttle and 30.5-inch vertical along the combine circuit.

"They are getting someone whose work habit is crazy," Johnson said. "I think I have got to this position because I work hard. I know my junior year people doubted me. I made sure this summer to work hard and I still feel like I am not anywhere close to my full potential. I feel like I am a polished receiver, someone whose routes are crisp and make plays."

Johnson will take his official visit to Texas on Dec. 9, and plans on enrolling in summer school to get his Longhorns career going.

"I think the biggest thing is now that I have this opportunity I have to make sure that I take everything out of it," Johnson said. "I have to make sure that I keep working hard, and that's one thing that I can bring to the team, a player this is going to work hard while he is there. It's a dream come true, a blessing."

Arizona, Northwestern, Wake Forest, Baylor, Rice, West Virginia, Kansas and Air Force were among the other schools to offer him.

William Wilkerson covers University of Texas football and recruiting for HornsNation Follow HornsNation's coverage on Twitter: @ESPNHornsNation