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National Signing Day 2015: Welcome to Penn State, Juwan Johnson

One of the crown jewels of the 2015 recruiting class comes from, you guessed it, New Jersey.

Welcome to Black Shoe Diaries' coverage of National Signing Day 2015. We're here to make sure that you know exactly who the newest Nittany Lions are, where they come from, and what we can expect of them. Each of these reports will include their vital information, their high school statistics, highlight tape analysis, outlook for their freshmen seasons and more. We sincerely hope you enjoy getting to know the stars of tomorrow. If you've been reading along with our recruiting coverage all year, we appreciate the support and are glad you hung around with us for the ride that was the 2015 recruiting class. If you are a new reader, welcome! We're glad you're here, and we hope you stick around for 2016!

To navigate your way to other members of the 2015 recruiting class, simply head back to our draft board and click on the player of your choice.

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Penn State is certainly not lacking in the wide receiver department these days. With young talent itching to see more playing time, the receiving situation hasn't been in a better situation for the present and the future in some time. How did James Franklin decide to use this information? To go out and add another weapon. This one though, could end up being the most dominant of all. Enter, Juwan Johnson.


Hometown: Glassboro, NJ

High School: Glassboro

Position: Wide Receiver

Height/Weight: 6'4"/216

247Composite Rank: ★★ (0.9396)

Positional Rank: #13 Wide Receiver, #3 Player in New Jersey

Commitment Date: March 16, 2014

247Sports Crystal Ball:

High School Stats

Johnson is one of the few players who has accurate stats on MaxPreps. As you can see, he made a huge jump as a senior. Coming into 2014, Johnson had 55 catches, 862 yards and 10 touchdowns in his career. During his senior campaign, he nearly matched all of those totals. If he continues on this upward trajectory, he's going to do special things at Penn State.

Year GP Catches Receiving Yards Yards/Game TD
Senior 10 42 804 80.4 9
Junior 9 26 421 46.8 4
Sophomore 11 29 441 40.1 6

Highlight Tape

Scouting Report

Juwan Johnson is a freak of nature, plain and simple. He's built to be the next Calvin Johnson, even if he still has a very long road ahead of him before he can think about being that type of impact player. He still needs work on his route running, and his hands can still be shaky at times. And yet, he still was one of the most dominating presences at the US Army All American game, and he still struck fear into every defense he faced in high school, particularly his senior season. One of the amazing things about Juwan though, is that even while standing at 6'4" and over 200 pounds, he still has the ability to make guys miss in the open field with more than sheer power.

He's big. He's strong. He's fast. He's powerful. He is the perfect receiver for Christian Hackenberg, and pretty much every other quarterback. Very good, should be the floor for his potential. He could go down as one of the greats.

Bud Elliot of SB Nation Recruiting agrees. Bud told me, "If he can improve his hands, Penn State has a huge weapon in the red zone. He caught the ball well on the day I saw him, but some said the hands have been an issue. And that's so important when you play bad weather game sin the Big Ten."

Luckily, getting a chance to play and practice in college gives you plenty of time to improve. Juwan's high school wasn't a very high volume passing offense, meaning he didn't get as many opportunities to catch that ball as a Minkah Fitzpatrick, north of where Johnson played. The good news is, that he seems to have a very good grasp on what his own strengths and weaknesses are. When I asked him about it, he told me, "My strengths are my size, speed, big play ability, and leadership role. Weakness is consistency."

Immediate Outlook

Redshirt No

Juwan Johnson is simply already too good to keep off the field. Chris Godwin, Saeed Blacknall and Eugene Lewis all provided the downfield threats for Hackenberg this past season, but none truly profile as dominant big men on the outside. That's where Juwan Johnson comes in. Aside from fitting in perfectly with the current receiver group, getting him on the field with Hackenberg as much as possible is a must for John Donovan. One of the reasons Hackenberg thrived as a freshman, was thanks to Allen Robinson's ability to go up and get the ball when Hack threw it up into his area. Johnson is the type of player who can make things happen on passes like that, perhaps even more so by the time he's a senior.

His height and his strength alone would be enough to get him into a starting role, but the hands may slow things down just a bit. Don't expect Juwan to be split out wide on the first snap of the 2015 season, but don't expect it to take many plays to get him out in the huddle, either. His presence on the field has the potential to open up the entire defense, as not any corners will be able to handle him in one on one coverage. Keeping Johnson off the field as a freshman, simply isn't an option.

Everything Else

Welcome to Penn State, Juwan!