February 14, 2010

Johnson Getting More Notice

Kevin McCarthy

Some matters in this world are simply inexplicable. Such as how Bear Grylls is still alive, let alone in one piece is one. Plus, God only knows why the 60-year-olds making up the band still call themselves the Beach Boys. Let’s add the college recruitment of Avery Johnson to the mix.

A senior backcourter at Ocean View High, the 6-foot-3 Johnson just put down 30 points and 10 assists against a good Orange Lutheran squad. But unlike so many others in southern California, he is still a free agent, unsigned, unsealed and undelivered.

photo of Avery Johnson
Recognition is coming to Johnson

Has the NCAA issued guidelines that limits the scholarship offers for anyone with the Johnson surname? Or is there a geographical limit and Orange County is bumping up against it?

Ask Ocean View Coach Jim Harris and he states Johnson "has not been recruited at the level he should be."

Harris describes his protégé as "quick, athletic and someone who plays hard and plays defense."

There were earlier questions about Johnson’s shooting range but that’s been resolved according to Harris. "He hasn’t shot that much but has shown he can hit from outside."

The senior also carries a 3.4 grade point average and is a qualifier.

"The bottom line is that he’s a great kid," Harris said.

He continued, "With my teams, nobody really averages a lot -- it’s usually the high teens. For the record, Johnson currently tops the Seahawks in three categories: points (17.5), assists (4.9) and steals (2.5).

Johnson has always performed best as a quarterback on the floor but wasn’t cast in that role this past summer during club team season. It’s certainly possible some colleges came away with a misconception.

"We usually share the duties but we haven’t lost this season since we made him our primary ballhandler," Harris said of Johnson, adding his point has a five-to-one assist-to-turnover ratio. "Good things happen when he has the ball."

The Seahawks finished the regular season at 23-3 with a 13-game winning streak (the defeats being a seven point loss to Gardena Serra and two defeats in a tournament in Arizona) and 10-0 in Golden West League play.

Notice of Johnson has actually picked up of late. He is visiting Portland this weekend and Pacific is genuinely interested. "Oregon has come down to watch him and Boston College was also here," Harris offered.

About time.

Our question is where are the Western Athletic Conference teams?