Keyshawn Johnson Jr. is just a high school freshman, but a flurry of early scholarship offers have quickly accelerated his recruiting process. The Southern California wide receiver spent Wednesday at Ohio State with his father, former NFL Pro Bowler Keyshawn Johnson Sr.
They watched Buckeyes coaches and players go about their business on the practice field and in meetings. It gave Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer an opportunity to showcase his program for the suddenly coveted Mission Viejo (Calif.) High School standout.
"I loved the atmosphere," Johnson Jr. told Bleacher Report. "It's a good fit for me."
His father also approved.
"Urban Meyer is a guy you can trust with your kid," he said.
Johnson Sr., who finished his professional career with 814 receptions for 10,571 yards and 64 touchdowns, played for Super Bowl champions Bill Parcells and Jon Gruden during an 11-year stay in the NFL. His admiration for Meyer was apparent after the visit to Columbus.
"Urban Meyer is a kind of guy I could play for," he said. "If you can't play for Urban Meyer, Ohio State isn't for you."
Johnson Jr. didn't play varsity football last season for the Diablos, though he turned heads at the freshman level and also participates in the 7-on-7 circuit. He was accompanied Wednesday by Darnay Holmes, a fellow California prospect on Team 19, which features Johnson Sr. as a coach.
Offers have poured in for Johnson Jr. in recent weeks. Ohio State, Florida State, SMU, Utah, Arizona State, Tennessee, Miami, West Virginia and UCLA each extended scholarships since March 20, making him one of the hottest Class of 2017 targets.
The 6'1", 180-pound playmaker added Louisville to that list Wednesday night, when both he and Holmes received offers from the Cardinals. As his collegiate opportunities continue to mount, Johnson Jr. views Ohio State as a strong option.
He was particularly impressed by the way Meyer orchestrates practice.
"He's very straightforward. Tells you if you're good, tells you if you're bad," he said. "What impressed me the most was how hard they worked, how hyped they were. Not a lot of other schools like that, that I have visited."
Johnson Jr., who recently spent time at Arizona and Arizona State, is slated to visit Clemson Thursday. An offer from the Tigers could be in the cards.
There's a long road ahead for the receiver in his recruitment. Multiple seasons with Mission Viejo's varsity football squad separate Johnson Jr. from signing day 2017 and a college career.
His father starred during two seasons at USC before becoming the No. 1 pick in the 1996 NFL draft. Johnson Sr. is now an established television analyst on ESPN.
Although he doesn't currently hold an offer from his father's alma mater, early expert projections have Johnson Jr. committing to the Trojans in 247Sports' Crystal Ball.
The father-son duo are sure to spend substantial time on campuses across the country in coming years. Their Ohio State visit provided an early highlight.
"I was impressed with Ohio State's coaching staff, Urban Meyer and Buckeye Nation," Johnson Sr. said.
All quotes obtained firsthand by Bleacher Report unless otherwise noted.
Thanks to B/R's Adam Donaldson for his contributions to story.
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