Johnson talks The Opening, "special class" the Tigers are building


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Johnson got to spend time with Rodgers and Higgins in Oregon
Johnson got to spend time with Rodgers and Higgins in Oregon

Hunter Johnson enjoyed last week’s trip to Oregon and the experience of participating in The Opening, and part of the reason was because he got to spend time with his future family.

The 5-star Clemson quarterback commit out of Brownsburg (IN) traveled to Eugene last week and was on the same 7-on-7 team as fellow Tiger commits Amari Rodgers and Tee Higgins, and Johnson told TigerNet he couldn’t have asked for a better experience.

“The Opening was great. I learned a ton of new things from some of the best coaches in the country,” Johnson said. “It was even better than I had imagined. I'm definitely going to stay in touch with the coaches for the rest of my career and then hopefully come back and help out like Deshaun (Watson).”

Watson spent time coaching the quarterbacks, and Johnson said he enjoyed his time with Clemson’s current quarterback as well as learning from those who have played on the next level.

“This was like my third or fourth time seeing Deshaun this summer so it was great to see him and hear from him again,” Johnson said. “I think we have very similar personalities. Jordan Palmer and Jake Heaps were my main coaches for the week and my 7v7 team. They are both great guys and really know and understand football. Plus, they have both played at the pro level and Jake is playing with the Seahawks right now so it was good to pick their brains a little bit. I also spent time with Coach (Trent) Dilfer obviously as well as George Whitfield who are both phenomenal coaches as well. I think the biggest take for me was just learning from them and seeing what it takes to be a successful quarterback at the college level and the level after that.”

The highlight, however, was spending time with Rodgers and Higgins, two wide receivers out of the state of Tennessee that Johnson is counting on to make his job at Clemson a little easier.

“Absolutely. I could obviously count on Tee and Amari,” Johnson said. “Plus, we have already built a lot of chemistry and thrown together at Clemson a couple times. We talk pretty much every day.”

Johnson has traveled the country so far this summer, traveling to California for the Elite 11 competition, flying back to Indiana for a state track meet, traveling to Clemson for head coach Dabo Swinney’s high school camp and then or Oregon for the Nike festivities.

He won’t be able to attend the All-In Cookout next week – a cousin had already planned a wedding – but still has football to play before school starts back in August.

“I leave for a 7-on-7 tournament in Hoover (AL) with my team this week,” he said. “And before you know it school will start again here in a couple weeks.”

In the meantime, he will continue to help Rodgers and Higgins recruits a few more big names for the 2017 recruiting class. Why? Because they are already a family.

“I think we could end up with three or four more big names,” Johnson said. “This class is special. We have great players but first we have great guys. It already feels like family and we aren't even on campus yet.”

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