Texas Basketball: 4-Star target Chris Johnson sets commitment date

Chris Johnson. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports
Chris Johnson. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports /

The offseason is never ending regarding college basketball, which rings true for the Texas basketball program the last couple of months. That, however, looks to be a good thing as first-year head coach Rodney Terry hopes to fill out his roster this summer.

Texas target Chris Johnson has set his commitment date for June 26, marking Coach Terry’s last chance to reel in a player from the high school class of 2023. Johnson, a high four-star prospect, will decide between Arkansas, Texas, and Washington on Monday.

The Missouri City (TX) native played his last high school season at Montverde Academy and saw his recruiting profile sky-rocket the previous summer. The 6-foot-4 combo guard signed with Kansas in November but requested his release from his letter of intent earlier this month.

Texas basketball among the top schools for 4-Star G Chris Johnson one day before his commitment date

According to the 247Sports Composite, he is ranked as the 53rd-best recruit in his high school class and is far and away the best class of 2023 prospect still on the board. He received a Crystal Ball prediction on June 21 in favor of the Horns.

Johnson has the perfect build for a guard in modern basketball. He is 6-foot-4, 180 pounds, with a long wingspan that translates to an elite defensive upside. Although he did not prioritize that end of the floor at the high school level, nothing about his build and athleticism should keep him from becoming a reliable defender.

Johnson is rated as a high four-star product because of what he can do on the offensive end of the floor. He is an elite slasher that uses a combination of strength and speed to get to the rim easily. Johnson has solid touch around the basket and is adept at finishing in multiple ways. He uses both hands well and has a reliable floater when attacking bigger defenders.

One of the primary deficiencies in Johnson’s offensive game comes from the outside. His slow and clunky release allows defenders to sag off and force him to beat them over the top. Do not expect Johnson to be a three-point threat in year one, but he should improve with college coaching and more time in the gym.

My favorite part of Johnson’s game is his willingness to pass and ability to put his teammates in advantageous spots to score. He reads the game well and plays with a flair that results in some highlight passes. Johnson’s willingness to set up his teammates at Montverde allowed him to lead the Eagles in assists last season.

Where Chris Johnson fits in at Texas:

Adding Johnson to this Texas basketball program would be a welcomed sight for fans and coaches alike. He would be the only freshman on the roster and a player who can project out as a multi-year starter for Coach Terry. Johnson would also be the first high school signee of what we hope to be a long and prosperous tenure for Coach Terry on the Forty Acres.

Should he sign with the Horns, Johnson would be the 10th scholarship player on the roster. This allows him to immediately compete for playing time in a talented but thin backcourt. The Longhorns have only three scholarship guards: Max Abmas, Tyrese Hunter, and Chendall Weaver. Johnson should be able to carve out a spot as the fourth guard in the rotation, mainly playing in an off-ball role.

A selling point for Texas is the opportunity to come in and play meaningful minutes in year one on a team that will likely begin the 2023/24 season ranked inside the top 15.

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Johnson is a very good player that will do damage at the collegiate level wherever he ends up. The need for Coach Terry to land his signature is magnified by the fact Texas currently has no high school signees in the class of 2023. Let’s see if they can change that on Monday.