Ex-Penn State cornerback T.J. Johnson lands at Cincinnati, Lions hope to sign recruits early, and more

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T.J. Johnson lands at Cincinnati

The Bearcat Journal, part of the 247Sports network, reported Thursday that cornerback T.J. Johnson, who earlier in the week was granted a release from his scholarship at Penn State, has transferred to Cincinnati.

Johnson, a redshirt freshman, is from the Cleveland area. Coming out of high school he was a 3-star prospect and the 70th best player in Ohio, according to 247Sports.

Sean Fitz of Lions247 was among those who linked Johnson’s announcement on Twitter of his intentions.

Lions hope to sign commits early

Director of Player Personnel Andy Frank appeared on the Penn State Coaches Radio Show on Thursday night, Mark Brennan of Fightonstate.com writes, and said that the Lions hope to sign the bulk of their 2018 recruits during the newly instituted early signing period, Dec. 20-22. PSU has 23 verbal commits to date.

Joe Moorhead remains a hot name

SI.com’s Bruce Feldman mentions Penn State offensive coordinator Joe Moorhead among the 30 hottest names on this year’s coaching carousel, calling the 43-year-old Moorhead the “architect of the most exciting offense in college football.” Moorhead, who before coming to Happy Valley was Fordham’s head coach, attracted the attention of a handful of schools this past offseason, but chose to stick around.

More props for Juwan Johnson

Tom Dienhart of BTN.com lists redshirt sophomore wide receiver Juwan Johnson among the Big Ten’s potential breakout players this season, and his position coach, Josh Gattis, said after practice Wednesday he is performing at a level that “could be the highest … we’ve ever had here at practice,” according to scout.com’s Mark Brennan. Paddy Cotter of the Daily Collegian also lists Johnson as one of six receivers who could pick up the slack in the wake of Chris Godwin’s departure for the NFL.

A look at the near-perfect kicker

In two seasons at Penn State, kicker Tyler Davis has attempted 32 field goals. He has made 30, and his two misses were both blocks. He proved he could kick in the clutch by making a last-second field goal to force overtime against Minnesota last October, a game the Lions went on to win. He proved he could kick in adverse weather last November at Rutgers, when he made four field goals. Philly.com’s Joe Juliano profiles Davis, who began his college career as a scholarship soccer player at Bradley.

Christian Campbell set for key role

Steve Connelly of CNHI Sports catches up with cornerback Christian Campbell, a senior who in the past said he prepared like a starter. Now, with the knee injury suffered by starter John Reid, he is one. “I have a bigger role,” he tells Connelly, “and I just have to execute.”

Tommy Stevens, at the ready

Rich Scarcella of the Reading Eagle/Times profiles backup quarterback Tommy Stevens, who with Trace McSorley behind center has only been afforded the opportunity to flash his skills on occasion. “It’s tough,” Stevens tells Scarcella, “(but) at the end of the day it’s not about me. It’s about the team. It’s about whatever we can do to win games. That’s why I came here.”

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