Penn State Basketball has gained another commitment out of the portal, this time from former UNC forward Puff Johnson. He will be a senior next year but carries 2 years of eligibility still thanks to the 2020-2021 season not counting toward eligibility. This a homecoming of sorts for Johnson as he is from PA.
The 6’8 forward spent all three years of his college career so far at North Carolina where he steadily increased his role every year. He averaged 4.1 points, 2.7 rebounds last year in 16 minutes a game for the Tar Heels. He is a big strong defender that affects the game in many ways that do not show up on the box score.
He is just pure hustle in every aspect of the game whether it is fighting for rebounds or diving for loose balls. The three-point percentage is not there yet sitting at just 28% last year, but the shot looks mechanically sound, that is an area of his game that could see a jump with a more expansive role in a new system.
He seems to be a near-perfect fit for new head coach Mike Rhoades’ aggressive defensive system. He can guard multiple positions and will be able to use his size and athleticism to wreak havoc in the chaos defense full-court press system.
Lineup versatility has been a theme so far with Penn State basketball’s portal additions. Besides Ace Baldwin, who is undoubtedly the star of the team so far, everyone else that has been brought in should be able to defend at least 3 positions if not more.
This latest commitment now puts Penn State at 7 scholarship players. They have so far retained freshman Kanye Clary, Demetrius Lilley, and Jameel Brown, as well as brought in VCU transfers Ace Baldwin and Nick Kern and Temple transfer Zach Hicks. This still leaves 6 scholarships for Mike Rhoades and his staff to fill, and with some glaring holes still open on the roster this process is far from over.