It's no secret that the basketball talent is over-flowing in the state of Ohio and many of the homegrown prospects are not leaving the borders for their college days. Marcus Johnson decided he'll play in front of his friends and family when he verbally committed to Dayton on Thursday.
Much like fellow Ohio natives Daequan Cook and David Lighty, both Ohio State commitments, Johnson decided he didn't want to go too far from home to play his college ball. The athletic 6-foot-2 guard from St. Vincent-St. Mary's High School in Akron, Ohio called head coach Brian Gregory and committed to the Flyers.
"I thought about it and Dayton just seemed to be a good opportunity for me to play as a freshman and gain that experience right away on the court," Johnson said.
Johnson joins Kurtis Huelsman, another Ohio native, in the Flyers' 2006 recruiting class. Johnson said he will play both guard positions.
"Coach Gregory said he'd like to see me play a little bit of point when I get there but also play the two guard spot," Johnson said. "He told me that they don't have a player like me on their roster right now that brings that versatility to the team. Hopefully I can make a great impact on their program.
After a nice showing at the Nike All-American camp and the Main Event in Las Vegas, Johnson was also considering Pitt, Providence and Memphis.
"I wanted to commit before the season began so I could really focus on my classes and the basketball season," Johnson said.
Focus will be key. With guys like him, Huelsman, Cook, Lighty and at least a dozen other high-major guys from various classes in the state, the season will be long and competitive.