Nashville, Tenn. (WKRN)- It was a day of celebration in Bell Buckle, Tennessee. Among the 317 kids attending The Webb School, a name you might be familiar with, 5-Star basketball recruit Keon Johnson.
“It’s certainly a dream come true going to college to play basketball,” said Keon Johnson.
On Wednesday, the shooting guard out of The Webb School, officially signed a letter of intent with the University of Tennessee. However the connection between the two was built during Johnson’s first visit to Knoxville.
“I think it was me and Grant Williams. He was my tour guide and as soon as I was with Grant I was like, this is where I’m supposed to be,” added Johnson.
But that isn’t the only thing that sold him on Tennessee, it was actually the one thing Head Coach Rick Barnes said to Johnson that made the Volunteers stick out.
“Coach Barnes told me that he hated recruiting and I kind of looked at him crazy but the work that they put in clearly shows why he hates recruiting because he’d rather be in the gym working with his players,” said Johnson.
Jeff Mitchell is the head basketball coach at The Webb School and agrees Tennessee is the perfect landing spot for his Senior shooting guard.
“He fits right in. He’s a tough kid that really smart and can guard multiple positions. He’s a versatile guard and most of all a great teammate that plays hard,” said Jeff Mitchell.
Johnson has been the best player on the court for the past three years, but he doesn’t take anything for granted, especially after overcoming a near career ending fireworks accident.
“It was M-80s, the ones that go in the air and blow really loud. I had lit it really fast and the fuse went fast and while I was leaning over it blew up,” added Johnson.
There was no long term damage done to Johnson’s hand, but it was a humbling experience that made him appreciate life on and off the court.
“From that to being saved has humbled me and just keeping god first through this whole process,” said Johnson.
Johnson had several offers to play at the next level from Florida to Ohio State, but he never bragged or even spoke too much about all his offers.
“He’s humble you don’t see him talking about the recruiting, he kept everything in perspective and has just gotten better in the classroom,” said Mitchell.
Johnson said he’s already planning for the next step in his hoops career, but before that he will finish out this season the best way he knows how.
“It’s not me knowing, I have to bring my game to another level just because of where I’m going, so I need to keep growing throughout the whole season,” said Johnson.