Justin Fuente Hosts 2017 DE Brad Johnson in His House, Showcases His "Down to Earth" Style

The head Hokie isn't afraid to show off his family as he woos recruits like the South Carolina DE.

DE Brad Johnson and his mom visited Tech the first week of December. [@_johnson864]

When 2017 4-star DE Brad Johnson of Pendleton (S.C.) HS made his way to Blacksburg for his official visit, Justin Fuente wasn't shy — the head Hokie invited Johnson right into his house.

Johnson got to spend three days getting acquainted with Tech's campus in early December as part of the trip, but he said his time with the Fuente family is what stood out most of all, as Tech's head man welcomed into his home with open arms.

"He definitely seemed down to earth, and meeting him in his house kind of helped that, you know?" Johnson told The Key Play. "It kind of helped put the football thing out of the picture, and he talked to me man-to-man. And he broke down what Virginia Tech had to offer me as a future and with my college and education."

But, of course, beyond the discussions about how "Virginia Tech could be that perfect fit for me and my family," Johnson said Fuente got down to brass tacks too — the team desperately needs depth at defensive ends, as soon as possible, but the Hokies know what they're looking for.

"They definitely emphasized the fact that they were short on some D-ends, and that they weren't going to go out and just recruit just any D-end," Johnson said. "They weren't just going to go out and grab any d-end because they needed one. They really wanted me and that I could fit in their scheme perfectly."

Shortly after his time in Casa Fuente, and upon meeting DC Bud Foster for the first time, Johnson began to get a better sense for exactly why the Hokies see him as the ideal scheme fit. In particular, Foster seems to value the 6'3", 230-pound DE's athleticism in space.

"They don't just use their ends as regular ends, they use them moving around the field and dropping back in coverage and blitzing and coming off the edge, things I like to do and things that fit my athletic ability perfectly, so they just definitely emphasized that a lot," Johnson said.

But while any coach can talk a big game about how his scheme might work for a particular player, Johnson feels Foster has the credentials to know what he's talking about.

"The more I talked to Coach Foster, the more I could see not only how much experience has, but how much knowledge he has of the game, and how that knowledge could help me out on the field and in the classroom as well, as a man," Johnson said. "He's seen plenty of kids come through here and do what I'm trying to do which is be successful and take my athletic ability to the max and to the next level of what I can take it to, so he's definitely a guy that knows those types of people that have been there before and help me get where I'm trying to go."

Johnson especially valued his time with Foster on the visit because he was "the only coach I didn't meet" during his lone previous trip to Blacksburg for the ECU game on Sept. 24.

"Last time I went, I went to the ECU game, me and my coach, so I was kind of asleep the whole ride up there, then parked the car and went to the stadium," Johnson said.

Once he got to Lane, the Hokies treated him to quite the show by whupping the Pirates 54-17.

"It was a great game and a great atmosphere, walking out and being on the sidelines with the players for the game, looking out and getting a feel for the crowd," Johnson said. "The crowd was definitely involved and it was loud, even with 60,000, which is a lot but not as much as some other colleges, but it still felt insane. I guess it was just because of how the stadium was made and how involved the fans and the crowd was, it just made it seem just as much as 80,000 or 90 or whatever."

But on that trip he only got to see "the facilities and whatnot," but not "campus and everything else." Accordingly, he used his official visit to not only rub elbows with the Fuentes, but also learn a little bit more about the school's layout.

Johnson and his mom stayed in style at the Inn at Virginia Tech, and the team gave him the full campus tour, courtesy of recruiting coordinator Chuck Cantor.

"Overall, me and my mom, we really enjoyed the campus and the whole trip," Johnson said. "We had a great one set up, and shouts out to the recruiting advisors, like Chuck Cantor and those guys for setting it up. We definitely enjoyed it, had a great time, and definitely Blacksburg will be on my heart coming this January and February while making this decision."

Indeed, Johnson does feel he's nearing a final decision. He's planning on taking two last official visits — one next weekend to South Carolina, then another to Tennessee the week after that — and then hopes to decide right afterward.

He's not sure whether he'll wait all the way until Signing Day or not, but he made it clear that the Hokies, and Fuente, will certainly be on his mind as he makes his college choice.

"I'll try to come home, and through a lot of prayers and conversations with my folks, try to make a decision," Johnson said.

Comments

Sounds like Co Fu and company are doing this recruiting thing right. The best part about this "new" coaching staff is they keep that family atmosphere at Virginia Tech. Got good feelings about this kid!

-Semper Primus

They (CJF & Bud) are being very up front with him, not trying to just 'tickle his ears' to get him to sign. He and his parents have to value this integregrity. What a classy coaching staff we have. I hope Brad joins the Hokie Nation.

nice, keeping the family atmosphere alive and well. Coach Fu's first year in the Burg get's an "A", lets see if he can keep it up!

I can imagine no more rewarding a career. And any man who may be asked in this century what he did to make his life worthwhile, I think can respond with a good deal of pride and satisfaction:
“I served in the United States Navy"

KCCO

He's a straight up football player.
There are kids with all of the measurables and there are kids that can just flat play.
Give me a team full of kids like this please.

...can we assume CJF said hi to Brad's mom?

Warning: this post occasionally contains strong language (which may be unsuitable for children), unusual humor (which may be unsuitable for adults), and advanced mathematics (which may be unsuitable for liberal-arts majors).

This kid would be a huge get. Would be great to steal him away from USCe. Muschamp has been on a tear recruiting, and still having that visit there worries me a bit.

"The crowd was definitely involved and it was loud, even with 60,000, which is a lot but not as much as some other colleges, but it still felt insane. I guess it was just because of how the stadium was made and how involved the fans and the crowd was, it just made it seem just as much as 80,000 or 90 or whatever."

This the kind of quote I expect from a kid who grew up 10 minutes from Death Valley. 83k and aesthetically pleasing, but the fans are hot and cold with their cheering. The Lane atmosphere tailed off a bit during the down years, but I took some of my Clemson fan friends to a VT game in 8th grade against Kent State, and and they couldn't believe how loud the stadium stayed throughout the game. These are kids who have gone to Clemson games their whole lives.

Who can honestly look at how Muschamp has acted in the past and say "Yep, that's someone I want to play for?" Admittedly I haven't watched USCjr. this year so maaaaaaaybe he's chilled out some....but I doubt it.

Haters gonna hate, potatoes gonna potate, and hetzers gonna hetz

From some highly rated kids at the high school I went to, "He's a total bro." Also, he does have a good track record on defense. Recruiting offense is a more perplexing story.

"He's a total bro."

Aaaaaaaand there's my disconnect.

But seriously, a "bro" that's an asshat is still an asshat and....well.....if you look in the dictionary under "asshat" A) you won't find it but more importantly B) you'll find the definition of asshat which Muschamp is on the field

Haters gonna hate, potatoes gonna potate, and hetzers gonna hetz

He probably has a much different demeanor when interacting with his players and potential recruits. Just like most coaches.

Careful...you don't want to make him angry

"We judge ourselves by our intentions and others by their behavior" Stephen M.R. Covey

“When life knocks you down plan to land on your back, because if you can look up, you can get up, if you fall flat on your face it can kill your spirit” David Wilson

Or do I? ;)

But this is my point exactly. You can't bring up Muschamp without this gif popping up. And it's not just this one either, there have been so many occasions that he's become known for it. Yeah, his defenses are usually pretty good but his attitude is just....repulsive.

And yes, of course he acts differently around recruits than he does players already on the team but this stuff is readily available and, as I said, gets brought up every time his name is mentioned.

Now, I'll admit I don't actually know the context of this gif. I suppose it's within the realm of possibility that the player slapped Muschamp's mother or something but um.....yeah. And I get being passionate and fired up in the moment but Christ alive he goes over the top.

But at the end of the day...meh, he's yet another reason for me to hate SC and USCjr so I've got that going for me, which is nice

Haters gonna hate, potatoes gonna potate, and hetzers gonna hetz

He shares Narduzzi's good nature and self control. /s

I'm not really defending him, but you can Google, X coach angry gif and find pretty much any of them having a moment. Even old Frank and an issue where he slapped Wilford in the helmet that caused a stir.

All I really know about him is that he appears to be a hot head, but that could easily be spun to say that he is a passionate coach. He obviously keeps getting jobs so he must interview pretty well and obviously kids like him if they think he is a "bro".

"We judge ourselves by our intentions and others by their behavior" Stephen M.R. Covey

“When life knocks you down plan to land on your back, because if you can look up, you can get up, if you fall flat on your face it can kill your spirit” David Wilson

Warning: this post occasionally contains strong language (which may be unsuitable for children), unusual humor (which may be unsuitable for adults), and advanced mathematics (which may be unsuitable for liberal-arts majors).

can we get some captions for this? Any lip readers out there?

Warning: this post occasionally contains strong language (which may be unsuitable for children), unusual humor (which may be unsuitable for adults), and advanced mathematics (which may be unsuitable for liberal-arts majors).

Looks like the player asked Muschamp how to pronounce Coach K's name. Doing so required him to adopt Coach K's face, too.

I'm going with...

"Peter...G** damn you, bite your head off you FOOL. NOW!!!"

maybe something got lost in translation...but pretty confident /s

Muschamp sniveling. Again.

What do you mean?

can we not refer to SCAR as USCe? I missed the "e" at first and got really confused thinking Muschamp was somehow recruiting for Southern Cal for a second there

If a tree falls in Scott Stadium does it make a sound?

SCar it is.

There's a legit question I want to ask first: do any of the "USCe," "USCjr," or "SCAR" monikers annoy their fanbase more than any of the others? Because that's the one I want to use

Haters gonna hate, potatoes gonna potate, and hetzers gonna hetz

USCjr and USCe both annoy them.

Wet stuff on the red stuff.

Join us in the Key Players Club

Locally they are "Carolina" and it frustrates them that on a wider scale "Carolina" is UNC. Same story with USC, which in SC is South Carolina, but everyone else it's Southern Cal. I don't know which one makes them the most mad, but I'd guess USCjr.

USCjr and USCe is even more of a slight, since they sued the real USC for brand infringement and lost. IIRC, part of the court decision is that in a broader context, the country thinks of the highly regarded private school in LA, when "USC" is used and not the JC in South Carolina.

edit: https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20100124/1914237887.shtml

If they want to be "Carolina" on a wider scale, they should be better at shit than the other one, which is populated by a bunch of argyle and visor wearing douche canoes, which makes one wonder how bad you have to be to be worse than that.

Also, considering their barbecue is mustard tainted trash, they will likely never be superior to the other Carolina at anything except starting unwinnable wars.

Isn't that in the Bible somewhere..."Ye shall know them by their 'que?"

Reel men fish on Wednesdays

Also, considering their barbecue is mustard tainted trash, they will likely never be superior to the other Carolina at anything except starting unwinnable wars.

I think you pretty much summed up a lot of my hatred for the state. Also flying cockroaches.

Haters gonna hate, potatoes gonna potate, and hetzers gonna hetz

Mr. Johnson,
I hope you become a Hokie, because you will be mentored by the best DC in the FBS. Young sir, I present for your consideration the following:

Hokie fans everywhere would love to see how many sacks you could add to our school total. Good luck to you young man. God bless.

Go Hokies!

Sounds like a great kid ! Get it done

Let's get him

Hokies, Local Soccer, AFC Ajax, Ravens

So if we can keep Proctor and then land Garbutt and Johnson that would be three, 4* DE's in one class. Holy DE depth Batman.

Sometimes I like to leave off the /s just to mess with people.

I agree that this would be awesome, plus the possible of getting Porcher and VDim..that would be great!! We would have the capability to redshirt a few and put some space between them. We start to build this team the right way.

We need this guy, but not sold he'll go out of state. Hopefully his experiences and memories of Blacksburg and the coaches stick.

This also reinforces why I do not follow recruiting much. Too many letdowns. I do realize that Fuente will draw in some we may have missed on in previous years.

Cant blame anyone for not following recruiting. TKP does an outstanding job covering these kids making it that much more painful when they commit elsewhere. I want to not read about them, but then what would I do? I need mah fix!!

I don't know what that is, but have a leg to go with it.

@hokie_rd

Monster physicality at the line of scrimmage. He isn't prototypical a recent Bud Foster DE because he isn't a bend and flatten guy. But, vs spread teams using quick hitters inside, having a DE that can whip a double team (or hold up to it) at the point of attack has a ton of value. He plays the same game as Mihota with twice the foot speed.

Five star get after it 100 percent Juice Key-Playing. MAN

He plays the same game as Mihota with twice the foot speed.

He would be an extremely valuable player to have if that is the case. Probably more valuable than Hunter since it all starts up front. Those guys are harder to come by than safeties.

Not so sure about that. hunter has some talent! Not saying this kid doesn't. I'll take both

As a single player, yes, that is true. Hunter's value is not just that he is a great player, but we also need players like him from VA to make coming to Virginia Tech sexy again.

And since I said sexy...
NSWF

[ mod edit: don't embed stuff like that ]

Welcome Mr. Johnson

Must.... resist....