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November 30, 2010MORE GATOR RECRUITING: Monday: UF coaches hit top prospects | Gators visit Rivals100 cornerback | Gators move up four-stars list | 4-star linebacker sets UF official visit | Rivals100 Pagan decommits from UF | Gators see top safety
Surely many Florida fans would say that they would have had a pretty good Thanksgiving weekend, were it not for an ugly three-hour stretch on Saturday afternoon.
And other than those three hours, Chris Johnson had a spectacular weekend.
The Florida commit played a key role during Ocala Trinity Catholic's domination of Jacksonville Bolles in the Class 2B regional final on Friday night.
On Sunday afternoon, Johnson and his family received a visit from Gator coaches Scot Loeffler and Chuck Heater. "They told me what they expect from me my first year," said Johnson. "They told me they need guys like me."
Johnson said Florida's struggles have not affected his commitment. "I still love the Gators," he said. "I'm all about respect. To me, if you look a guy eye to eye and commit to being a Gator, then that stands."
Rivals rates Johnson as the 35th best safety prospect in America. He is currently a three star prospect.
"It was tough," Johnson said of Florida's 7-5 season. "Florida is still one of the top programs in the country. I'm looking forward to us turning it around next year, hopefully with me playing an important role."
Florida State's resounding victory on Saturday apparently has further motivated Johnson. "I'm all about revenge," he said. "I'm looking forward to seeing them in the Swamp next year. I'm going to be really prepared for that game."
While Johnson has watched his future team underachieve, his current squad has maintained its intensity during an impressive playoff run. Trinity Catholic led #1 ranked Bolles 35-0 after three quarters during Friday's game, before Bolles scored three late touchdowns to make the final score respectable.
The 5-foot-10, 198-pound Johnson showed his athleticism late in Friday's first half. As a cornerback, his jarring hit on a blitz forced a Bolles fumble. Five plays later he scored a touchdown as running back.
"To knock a powerhouse out like Bolles feels good," said Johnson. "We've got to keep our heads in it and not get cocky and get prepared for our game this week."
Trinity Catholic will travel to the Panhandle to take on Pensacola Catholic on Friday in class 2B state semi-final.
"We've got great coaches and they've been able to get us ready," Jackson said of the Celtic staff. "Now its up to us to go out there and do what we've been able to do in practice."