ATLANTA — Mario Butler has a secret, and it can’t reach Isaiah Johnson’s ears or eyes.
“I don’t want to compare him, but he reminds me a lot of Morgan (Burnett) when he was a freshman. He has that same kind of capability,” Butler, a senior Georgia Tech cornerback, said, comparing the Yellow Jackets’ true freshman safety to a departed All-ACC veteran.
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Then, seconds later, with a sarcastic smile, Butler added: “You’ve got to keep that on the low. We’ve got to let him get there first.”
Sorry, Mario. The secret’s out.
Isaiah Johnson poses with his new 'GT' hat during Signing Day 2010. The safety is expected to play early in his career as a true freshman. Much like his mentor, a recent draft pick... Photo Credit: schools.clayton.k12.ga.us
The hush-hush matter isn’t really a secret, though. A split second after Johnson laid out a B-back during a 7-on-7 drill this spring, it became basic knowledge to many around the program that this young player was about to embark on what should be a very successful career at Georgia Tech. A fond pat on the helmet right after the play from venerable assistant Al Groh all but sealed that collective thought.
Not to mention, during his Media Day press conference Saturday, head coach Paul Johnson singled out Isaiah Johnson as the one true freshman who he knew would see playing time this season.
Whatever Paul Johnson sees, it’s clear his players have tapped into it, as well.
“With all that coming out of my mouth, and knowing I played on the side of Morgan for three years, you know, hey, he has that kind of potential,” Butler said....
***To read more, check back to macon.com tomorrow morning and read tomorrow's Telegraph.