March 17, 2006
Tallahassee, Fl. - It was three years ago that Florida State basketball coach Leonard Hamilton had the number one recruiting class in the nation.
One of the jewels of that class was the signing of Albany's Alexander Johnson.
The former Dougherty High standout looked like anything but a blue chipper in his first two years when he was plaqued by injuries.
The big reason for those injuries was the fact that A.J. was not in playing shape.
Johnson caught a break when David Thorpe, who coaches NBA players in the summer, accepted A.J. into his basketball camp.
Johnson not only learned alot basketball playing with NBA players.
He also learned alot about his diet and dropped almost 30 pounds.
The leaner look paid off for Johnson this season when he earned honorable mention all-ACC honors this season.
And the good news is that while A.J. is happy with his improved play this year, he knows and more importantly is working even harder to get even better.
Alexander Johnson said "The biggest thing to me was my conditioning. I always knew I could play. I always had talent but it was conditioning. But when I saw coach left me in after five or six minutes straight then I knew I had made progress there and I knew it was going to get better and better as the season went along."
Florida State head coach Leonard Hamilton said "The good news I think is that he has only scratched the surface of his potential. I think he has the chance to be alot better next year."
Alexander Johnson and Florida State face Butler in the 2nd round of the NIT Friday night at seven o'clock in Tallahassee.