Detroit News Blue Chip countdown: No. 11 Dior Johnson

By David Goricki, The Detroit News

Dior Johnson was a two-way talent at Southfield.

The Detroit News is counting down the top 15 players on its list of Blue Chip football recruits. Today: No. 11 Dior Johnson of Southfield.

Southfield standout two-way player Dior Johnson enjoyed his team's rivalry with Oak Park, pointing out the highlight of his senior year came in the final minute of a playoff win.

Johnson, a 6-foot-1, 190-pound defensive back, made his memorable play while hauling in a TD pass for the difference in a 14-13 district championship win.

"I caught a 12-yard touchdown pass in the final minute," Johnson said. "Our quarterback made a great pass and I was able to go up and get it."

While Johnson thinks he's a natural at the receiver position, he is committed to Wake Forest as a safety. He is rated four stars by and three stars by, and received offers from more than a dozen other schools, including Minnesota, Cincinnati, Illinois and Indiana.

"I consider myself to be very versatile," Johnson said. "I'm a natural receiver, but I've played DB the last three years and I feel I can get much better at that position."

Johnson said he saw significant improvement his senior season when he was no longer afraid to make mistakes.

"I just went out and put it all on the line," Johnson said. "I just went out and had fun and didn't play scared -- where I was afraid to maybe make a mistake before. I feel I got a lot better at being a sure-handed tackler too."

Johnson, a three-year starter, had 79 tackles while breaking up six passes to help Southfield earn a Division 2 regional championship and a 9-4 record, losing to eventual state champion Warren De La Salle in the state semifinals.

Johnson played in a secondary that also showcased Ray Buford (Minnesota), Davonte Ginwright (Western Michigan) and Jamar Antwine, who recently de-committed from Central Michigan.

Johnson said he picked Wake Forest because of the Demon Deacons' early interest.

"They pulled the trigger when most schools wouldn't," said Johnson. "I went to their Day Camp in July, did a good job, and Coach (Dave) Clawson offered me. It's a good academic school too, and I plan to major in business management."

Still, Johnson is taking an official visit to Minnesota Friday after Gophers assistant Jay Sawvel came for a home visit Wednesday.

"It's getting pretty hectic right now with Signing Day coming soon," Johnson said Thursday. "I'm going to Minnesota tomorrow just to make sure I'm making the right decision."

And if Michigan comes calling?

"There's a lot of speculation on social media about Michigan wanting me," he said. "I haven't heard from them directly. I'd have to talk it over with my parents if they do coming calling."


No. 11 Dior Johnson, Southfield (Wake Forest)

No. 12 Alex Grace, Saginaw Swan Valley (Western Michigan)

No. 13 John Keenoy, East Kentwood (Western Michigan)

No. 14 Cole Chewins, Clarkston (Michigan State)

No. 15 Mike Danna, Warren De La Salle (Central Michigan)