One of Michigan’s more intriguing prospects in the 2019 recruiting class is Washington (D.C.) St. John’s four-star athlete Quinten Johnson. The 6-foot, 190-pound senior brings great versatility and athleticism to the field and got the chance to display his elite skill-set against the best of best this week as an Under Armour All-American.
“Things went well actually,” Johnson told The Michigan Insider. “I limited my reps because of a foot problem, but at the end of the day, it was good work and I got to polish my tools up. I picked up a lot of things from the coaches and the players.”
During the week of practices down in Orlando, Florida, Johnson squared off against some of the nation’s top wide receivers and saw the most growth on just simply his attention to detail in terms of defending them.
“Definitely my attention to detail,” Learning guys, learning how they move, figuring out little tricks and tools they use to get open and pretty much figuring out guys because every receiver has their own niche and using that niche against them.
Next up, Johnson will sign letter of intent to Michigan during a Feb. 6 ceremony at his high school. He will not arrive to Ann Arbor until late spring because his school does not allow early graduation, but says he plans on working out and preparing to play wherever the Wolverine coaching staff lines him up at.
“You can have a plan, but at the end of the day, you can go through camp and that can change a thousand times,” Johnson said on Michigan’s plan for him coming in. “Wherever Don Brown puts me, wherever Coach Pep seems fit. It’s probably going to be more defense at first. First year and second year, you might see me both ways depends on the coaching staff, but I plan to make an impact as soon as possible.”
With it expected for Johnson to start his career on the defensive side of the ball, he knows he can come up into the box and help in run support, but feels first and foremost he can lock down the man across from him in coverage as well.
“First aspect definitely covering because I look at myself as a big corner at the end of the day,” Johnson said. “I think I can cover any receiver in the country. From the outside or the inside. I can come down in the box and make the hit. I’m definitely going to be a cover corner at first at heart. I ain’t playing corner, but that’s the mentality at heart.
“I definitely have the confidence to play any skilled position on the field. That’s what you got to be. I played almost everyone in high school and I feel like even if it’s being a receiver, whether they put me on the field, I can excel and polish my tools.”
The Wolverines have some talented defensive backs heading to Ann Arbor like five-star safety Daxton Hill. The two have already talked and the goal is the same coming in – help the team win.
“At the end of the day, we both just want to win,” Johnson said. “If that’s both of us on the field at the same time playing safety, then we are going to gel together. After picking each other brains and learn from each other because we are going to be one unit. That’s all four defensive backs on the field.”
And while the maize and blue didn’t finish the season like they hoped to, Johnson says that didn’t impact his feelings at all and looks forward to helping Michigan reach new heights.
“No (their season didn’t affect me) because at the end of the day, I’m a competitor,” Johnson said. “If we are not at where we want to be right now, then when I get there, I know where I want to be at, so when I get at Michigan, I don’t plan on the same things. I’m definitely going to work my hardest.
He added on the outlook of the Wolverines moving forward.
“The future is always bright,” Johnson said. “I’ve been looking at even pieces from the recruiting class from last year. There’s a lot of tools in place for the program to be where it wants to be. We just got to utilize them.”
Johnson’s also doing his part on the recruiting trail and putting in a good word or two for Michigan with other highly-touted prospects in the area including his own school.
“Yeah, I talk to (recruits) everyday, but at the end of the day, I can just tell them what Michigan has to offer,” Johnson said. “It has a lot to offer that other schools don’t similarity on the field and off the field. I can show them tools and different ways for them to figure it out for themselves, but at the end of the end, they got to come to a decision that is best for them. When they realize 20 years from now, 15 years from now what the best school is that’s going to put them in place to be successful, then they are going to come to Michigan.”
For now, Johnson’s excited to be a part of Michigan’s top ten ranked incoming 2019 recruiting class and knows the chemistry they’ve already developed will only benefit them as well.
“Oh yeah even with the dudes not here, there is a lot of Michigan dudes that we are pretty much family now,” Johnson said. “ We got group chats and pretty much talk everyday. That bond is already built.”
Johnson sits as the No. 370 overall prospect in the 2019 class, the No. 29 safety in the nation and the No. 3 player in DC, according to the 247Sports Composite rankings.
Embedded video interview above conducted by Sam Webb