Overcoming obstacles has been the motto of Blinn (Texas) College running back James Johnson and now the junior college running back prospect is ready to get everything going in the right direction.
The 5-foot-11, 200-pound speedy running back was a Port Arthur (Texas) Memorial graduate in the class of 2003 and even with several offers on the table from LSU, Iowa State, Kansas, Oklahoma State, and Texas Tech, factors somewhat unclear led him to Blinn. Now, assistant coach Allen Johnson says he's turned his life around and his stronger because of it.
"He's tough from what he's been through," coach Johnson said. "His background coming out of Port Arthur was an unfortunate set of circumstances with no father at the house and people always helping them out. Now, he's turned into a positive influence on the team and he was voted as the team captain by his teammates."
Team captain is added to the list of honors that also includes being named a first-team All-American for the National Junior College Athletic Association. The sky is the limit now for the strong young man.
"I don't think his grades out of high school allowed him to be a qualifier and I think that's really what brought him here," coach Johnson said. "Then he got bigger faster and took over leadership duties. Fresno State has offered him and I know Oklahoma, Texas A&M, and Nebraska are after him."
Though the Division I interest has come, the star running back is not ready to start naming favorite teams or setting up visits. He's taking this very slow up until graduation next spring.
"He's waiting to see all of his options and then he'll go from there," coach Johnson said about his running back. "The plan is to graduate and be ready to go after the spring."
If there is one thing that colleges are already finding out is that they don't come much faster than the speedy athlete.
"He is averaging a 4.31-second forty-yard dash right now," coach Johnson said. "I think one time he slipped and ran a 4.4, so he's fast."