After loss in championship, 3-star ASH football receiver TJ Johnson 'hungrier than ever'

LaMar Gafford
Alexandria Town Talk

T.J. Johnson wants another championship ring. Bad.

After winning a state title in basketball in 2020, Johnson has his mind focused on leading Alexandria Senior High to a football title.

“I’m hungrier than ever,” said Johnson, a three-star receiver according to the 247Sports Composite rankings. “My appetite’s big right now.”

After an offseason that saw him pick up offers from schools such as Florida State, Virginia and Mississippi State, Johnson is poised to step up as the Trojans’ No. 1 receiver.

ASH's T.J. Johnson runs against Ferriday during a game held Friday, Sept. 3, 2021 at Butch Stoker Memorial Stadium.

He got off to a big start Friday against Ferriday, catching four passes for 42 yards and a touchdown and returning a punt for a touchdown in the 65-8 win.

“I still think that T.J.’s just scratching the surface of what he can become,” Trojans coach Thomas Bachman said. “He’s been a great player for us. I’m really proud of T.J.’s progression and how much better he has a chance to be, even over the course of this season.”

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Johnson flashed that potential during ASH’s playoff run last season with 12 catches for 175 yards and four touchdowns, including the game-winner against Zachary in the quarterfinals.

While the 35-34 loss to Acadiana in last year’s championship game stung, it fueled Johnson to finish the job this year.

“It made me go even harder during the offseason,” Johnson said. “Working throughout the days was tough. The offseason was tough, but going through it made it all worth it.”

The Trojans lost numerous seniors from last year’s group, but Johnson has familiarity with their new quarterback – junior Joe Bordelon.

ASH's T.J. Johnson (11) celebrates a touchdown against Ferriday during a game held Friday, Sept. 3, 2021 at Butch Stoker Memorial Stadium.

“T.J. and I have a relationship you want to have with a quarterback and a wide receiver,” Bordelon said. “I hang out with T.J. all the time. He’s a great person on and off the field. I look at him as a role model and we’ve been playing ball since middle school together. He’s grown up now and doing big things.”