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August 2, 2011Drico Johnson always knew it would be UCF.
The wide receiver from Orlando's Agape Christian Academy appreciated the love shown by the Knights, who were the first school to offer and made it clear from the beginning they wanted him in their program.
On Tuesday, he was ready to make it official with a commitment.
"I love everything that's going on over there," Johnson said. "UCF from day one has shown me that they want me. They were my first offer, they'd sent me letters and did everything to stay in touch with me. I love the coaches, especially Coach Kelly, the receiver coach. The relationship was great."
Johnson, who always intended to make a decision before school started, chooses the Knights over offers from Marshall, Purdue, NC State, Indiana, Iowa State, Cincinnati, FAU, FIU, Memphis and Temple. He visited several Big Ten schools earlier this summer, but felt like UCF was the best option.
"Th campus is real nice," Johnson said. "I really like all the coaches. I felt a real close bond with Coach Kelly. I'd call him and we'd talk a lot. I also like how it's not too far from home. My family is also excited about that."
He explained how the commitment went down.
"I called Coach O'Leary and we were talking," Johnson said. "We were having a conversation. I told him I want to be part of the Knights family. He was like, 'I've been waiting on you to become part of our family. Are you ready to make a verbal?' I was like yeah, I'm ready to make a verbal."
The commitment was welcome news to UCF coaches who are looking to land several top receivers in this class.
"They need a big receiver like me," Johnson said. "I have a good chance of coming in and playing early. They were real happy about the situation. That's my goal too. I want to come in and make an impact."
Johnson says others have compared to him NFL wide receiver star Terrell Owens.
"I think it's because I'm big and fast and I've got good hands," Johnson said of the comparison.
He says he's good friends with two UCF players who are Edgewater alums - wide receiver Quincy McDuffie and defensive end Deion Green.
"I've known those two for a long time," Johnson said.
UCF is targeting a couple Edgewater players in this class too: wide receiver Alton Howard, who is McDuffie's younger brother, and linebacker Karl Joseph.
"I'm trying real hard to recruit them," Johnson said. "Me and Alton Howard grew up together. We've known each other since we were young. We have a good chance of getting him. Karl played on my 7-on-7 team. I've just met him, but we're real cool. We talk."
Johnson becomes UCF's third commitment for 2011 joining fellow wide receiver Taylor Oldham and quarterback Kedric Bostic.
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