(Photo courtesy of @gjohnson_3)
FOGGY BOTTOM – George Washington has secured their first of what is expected to be many additions this offseason, with 6-8 wing Garrett Johnson announcing his commitment Wednesday evening.
Committed. @GW_MBB pic.twitter.com/jJMSe7QpXl
— Garrett Johnson (@gjohnson_3) April 5, 2023
With the only players on the roster for next season so far being redshirt sophomore wing and reigning Atlantic 10 Rookie of the Year Max Edwards, redshirt junior Keegan Harvey, junior walk on Laziz Talipov, and the freshman guard trio of Jacoi Hutchinson, Trey Autry, and Christian Jones, Johnson appears to be in line to immediately compete for significant playing time.
Johnson was initially committed to Princeton for the 2021-22 season, but missed his entire freshman campaign after being diagnosed with a rare benign tumor in his left hip. That season, he underwent four different surgeries, but none of them were completely effective. Johnson then elected to sit out what would have been his sophomore year at Princeton to continue receiving treatment. After undergoing chemotherapy, the tumor in his hip shrunk to where it is no longer an issue for him.
“It’s been a long time,” said Johnson. “But I’m feeling healthier than ever now.”
After missing two years, then having his senior year of high school be interrupted by COVID, Johnson has not played in very many competitive games and there is not much tape on him.
When asked to describe his game, Johnson said he is “athletic,” “versatile,” and “able to score on all three levels and defend one through four.”
Asked why he decided to commit to GW, Johnson stressed how he wanted to stay close to home after dealing with all of his health issues the past two years. Johnson is from Oakton, a town in Northern Virginia about 20 minutes from GW’s campus, attended high school at Episcopal High School in Alexandria, and competed in AAU for DC based Team Takeover.
“Especially with it being so long since I’ve been on the court, there are a lot of people in the area who have helped me get to where I am now and people who have supported me throughout [my recovery],” said Johnson. “It’ll be really cool to be able to be in the area and have them be able to come see me play.”
On the court, Johnson said that both he and the GW coaching staff think that his versatility will make him a great fit for the program.
A consistent talking point from GW head coach Chris Caputo this past season was his inability to put together lineups on the floor that featured at least four shooters because of injuries.
“I didn’t have one time this year where we could put four three point shooters on the court, let alone five,” said Caputo recently on WRGW Sports’ Buff and Blue Revue podcast. “We’ve got to give ourselves more flexibility and versatility on both ends.”
Not too much can be predicted right now with there still being so many open scholarships, but Johnson should be able to give GW the ability to either go small and space the floor by playing him at the four, or go bigger and play him at the two or three.
Academics were another reason why Johnson decided to commit to GW. Johnson said he’s excited about GW’s political science program, and is especially interested in studying public policy.
The next opportunity to see Johnson on the court may be this summer at the Kenner League, DC’s pro-am summer league that often features local student-athletes. Johnson said that he is currently pursuing an opportunity to participate. If he does, this will be his first competitive action since his senior year of high school in 2020-21.