Posted at 5:04pm — 2/15/2016

GBMWolverine Message Board Readers: Here is a overview of University of Michigan recently signed commitment Nate Johnson.

Class of 2016 signee, Nate Johnson, ended a quick week of visits (home, school, by staff, and Nate to Michigan campus) with an even quicker commitment.

This was somewhat of a head-scratcher since Michigan returns three high quality receivers next year and it is assumed, perhaps erroneously, that at least two more talented underclass receivers are waiting in the wings to contribute at a significant level. In addition, the 2016 class of possible wide-outs, slots, and tight ends can best be described as voluminous.

Nathan Johnson’s offer sheet is modest and his recruiting effort by Michigan was short, which leads to an assumption that someone either had a quiet eye on Johnson, or someone with immediate knowledge gave the Wolverines a heads up call. Johnson had a truly productive senior year. Very few high school receivers can claim over eighty catches and 27 touchdowns in a high school season. His hands appear to be better than average and his tracking and running after a catch are very good.

Johnson has reported times of around 4.5 in the forty and 11.1 in the 100-meter dash. He is not big, but looks like a potential prospect at slot.

Northwestern was clearly interested in Nate Johnson and indeed he does appear to be a typical Wildcat slot. We will give away the Michigan comparison right now, as he does resemble Roy Roundtree, and like Roy, Johnson will need to add bulk and strength, along with other success traits. The truth is, a strong slot would greatly help the Michigan offense.

With all of the 2016 signees competing in fall practice, it seems obvious one or two should emerge as potential starters down the road. The collective talent is strong.

Nate Johnson
Height: 5'11
Weight: 180
Number: 2
Current Position: Wide Receiver
Future Position: Slot Receiver / Wide Receiver
City/State: Thompson's Station, Tennessee
High School: Independence
Head Coach: Scott Blade
Recruiter: Jedd Fisch
Visited: 12/11/2015
Committed: 12/12/2015
Top 5 other Offers: Army, Miami (FL), Northwestern, Penn State, and Tennessee.
Other Visits: Michigan 12/12/2015, Miami (FL) 1/15/2016, Vanderbilt 1/22/2016, and Northwestern 1/29/2016.
40-Time: 4.6
20-yard Shuttle: 4.03
Vertical: 39"
Power Throw: 35'
SPARQ: 111.39
Class: 2016 Michigan Wolverine Football Recruiting Class (Signed).

Follow Nate Johnson: on Twitter

Deuce ‏@natedog0202 Feb 8Cant wait to get up to AA!! #goblue



Note: Stars do matter, but are not absolute in predicting success within a football program. So, with that in mind the GBMWolverine Message Board Staff has cleverly come up with a new system of ranking. We are using footballs instead of stars, how can one argue against a system that clever? Below are the interpretations of football power predicted way too boldly long before it matters. In other words, we will give informed opinion with the crystal ball and let the players determine what will happen through years of hard work.

Criteria: Raw talent, athleticism, position of need, intangibles.

GBMWolverine Message Board Staff Rankings:

10 footballs: Instant impact player.
9 footballs: Three or four-year starter at a high level.
8 footballs: A starter with all league potential.
7 footballs: A meaningful starter at some time during a career.
6 footballs: A spot starter or special teams player.

5 footballs: Not in the two deep after a two years.
4 footballs: Never made it.
1-3 footballs: See the above.

We have him at 6 1/2 - 7 footballs.

Side Note: Remember just as we did during the season with grading positions or groups we are very tough graders and expect a lot out of those positions or players so this is no different here.

Michigan Coach Jedd Fisch on Nate Johnson:

We discovered Nate later on in the recruiting process and are thrilled that he is going to part of this class. He is a slot receiver and a returner. He has the ability to play outside, but I see him playing inside at the outset. Nate was the runner-up for Mr. Football in the state of Tennessee with an incredible amount of production. He has huge numbers, a ton of catches, won the state championship on an undefeated football team, and started every game. He is one of those guys who can make every catch, even the acrobatic catches. He is a 5-11, 180-pound wide receiver, very similar to a Grant Perry in terms of body size, skill set and production in high school. He'll come in with no shyness about him whatsoever, and a determination to work hard and be real good.

Key Stats:

• Caught 156 passes for 3,067 yards and 44 touchdowns during his high school career
• Recorded 87 catches for 1,713 yards and 27 touchdowns as a senior; also scored a rushing touchdown
• Caught 62 passes for 1,290 yards and 17 touchdowns as a junior


• Three-star prospect by and rated as the No. 19 prospect in the state of Tennessee
• ESPN three-star prospect and listed as the 31st-best prospect in the state of Tennessee
• three-star prospect and ranked as the No. 2 wide receiver in Tennessee
• PrepStar Magazine All-Southeast Region and a three-star prospect

In the Words of the Johnson Family:

We first knew Nate would be destined for greatness in 2008, when he helped lead his little league football team to the state championship against a larger and better team. They were state runner-ups that year, but they played with no fear. He has been expected to be a playmaker on every team he’s been on since the beginning of his football career. It would be impossible to list all of Nate’s records in each of his sports; there would simply be too many. He has always been the kid who could run the fastest and jump and throw the farthest. Since the seventh grade, Nate has always produced elite All-America results in amateur athletic track and field competitions for his age group. Nate is a “Student of the Game,” determined to take his game to the next level and he works to motivate others to succeed through his own actions. He is definitely a leader, but is always willing to learn.


Nate Johnson led his high school to the Tennessee State Championship with a perfect 15-0 record. He caught 87 passes for 1700+ yards and 21 touchdowns. For his career, Nate caught 157 passes for 3000+ yards and 43 touchdowns. Nate runs the sprints in track, with a reported best time of 11.1 in the 100meters. It is most likely Nate will play slot or wideout at Michigan.


Nate’s best feature is his hand skill, which, as stated, is very good. Nate is solid at getting off the line and avoiding jam, he runs good routes and shows a nice double move. Film shows he goes over the middle to make a catch and is solid running after the catch. Film shows good quickness and he does a nice job reading and setting up blocks.

Concerns/Needs Work:

Nate’s blocking is a work in progress. He will also need to get stronger which of course would help his blocking. Nate also needs to improve his burst and explosiveness, learning to change levels coming out of his cuts will help.

Red-shirt or play his Freshman Year?

GBMWolverine Message Board Staff believes he will likely red-shirt his first year.

Nate Johnson reminds the GBMWolverine Message Board Staff of -- Former Michigan Football Player -- Roy Roundtree -- who played Slot and Wide Receiver.

Video Highlights:

2016 Michigan Wolverine Football Recruiting Class:

Michigan has twenty-eight signed commits at this time with Brandon Peters — Enrolled — (QB),
Kingston Davis — Enrolled — (FB/HB), Michael Onwenu (OL), Chris Evans (Slot), Sean McKeon — Enrolled — (TE), Josh Metellus (S), Ben Bredeson (OL), Devin Gil (S/LB), Ron Johnson Jr. (DE), Brad Hawkins (WR), Ahmir Mitchell — Enrolled — (WR), Carlo Kemp — Enrolled — (DE/LB), Nate Johnson (WR), Devin Bush Jr. — Enrolled — (LB), Kareem Walker — Enrolled — (RB), Dylan Crawford (WR), Stephen Spanellis (OL), David Long (CB), Joshua Uche (DE), Elysee Mbem-Bosse (LB). Michael Dwumfour (DL), Eddie McDoom (Slot), Khaleke Hudson (LB/FB), Nick Eubanks (TE), LaVert Hill (CB), Quinn Nordin (K/P), Rashan Gary (DL), and Devin Asiasi (TE).

At this time Dytarious Johnson (LB) is still committed to Michigan, but has to complete some school work before his letter of intent will be accepted.

Final Thoughts:

We welcome Nate Johnson to Michigan and hope he has a successful career on and off the football field as a student-athlete at the University of Michigan. Go Blue!

Written by GBMWolverine Message Board Staff — CoachBT, Doc4Blu, and ErocWolverine

Go Blue — Wear Maize!