#STRecruiting: QB Hunter Johnson returning to #Clemson for final season

Hunter Johnson

Clemson coach Dabo Swinney has made his first acquisition from the NCAA Transfer Portal, and it’s a familiar name. QB Hunter Johnson (6-2 215) of Brownsburg, IN, who started his career with the Tigers in 2017 before transferring to Northwestern, is returning to the Upstate for a grad transfer year. He will arrive at Clemson at the start of summer school May 17th.

“A big part of it is just because I know so many people down there,” Johnson said. “I was to going to apply to their MBA program and was going to reach out to Coach Swinney about a potential GA (graduate assistant) spot. He kind of asked if I had my sixth year of eligibility and that is kind of how it all came down. I just kind of took some time to think about it a little bit because I hadn’t given much thought to it. He presented me with the opportunity and it worked out great.”

Along with Swinney, Johnson also has spoken with quarterbacks coach Brandon Streeter and the quarterbacks on the roster, including returning starter DJ Uiagalelei.

“Coach Swinney told me that going into the season DJ is the guy, and I wouldn’t want it any other way,” Johnson said. “I don’t want to create any drama, I just want to help out any way I can. This is a win for everybody. He thinks it would be great to have an older guy in the room. I also told the quarterbacks that I am coming in to help out and not take anybody’s spot. I have a sixth year of eligibility and I get to go play football again. I have a chance to be a part of Clemson’s football team and help out those guys, and that is really exciting for me.”

Johnson played in seven games as a true freshman at Clemson in 2017. He was 21-27 for 234 yards and 2 touchdowns as a backup to Kelly Bryant. He transferred to Northwestern and sat out the 2018 season. Over the next three seasons, Johnson appeared in 11 games and passed for 856 yards with 5 touchdowns and 8 interceptions.

He was voted a team captain for 2021 and was the #1 quarterback to start the season, but he eventually lost the job to former USC quarterback Ryan Hilinski.

Along with Uiagalelei and Johnson, the Tigers will also have in their quarterback room for 2022 freshman Cade Klubnik, Hunter Helms and Billy Wiles.

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