May 8, 2013
MANHATTAN, Kan. – Kansas State head coach Bruce Weber announced today that point guard Nigel Johnson (Ashburn, Va./Riverdale Baptist School) has signed a National Letter of Intent with the Wildcat basketball program, becoming the fifth signee in 2013.
The second point guard recruit of the class, Johnson joins Neville Fincher (Teaneck, N.J./Hargrave Military Academy), Marcus Foster (Wichita Falls, Texas/Hirschi), Wesley Iwundu (Houston, Texas/Westfield) and Jevon Thomas (Queens, N.Y./St. John’s [Wis.] Northwest Military Academy) in the Class of 2013. Foster and Iwundu both signed in the early signing period in the Fall, while Fincher and Thomas joined Johnson in the Spring signing period.
A 6-foot-1, 180-pound point guard Johnson comes to K-State from Riverdale Baptist School in Upper Marlboro, Md., where he helped the Crusaders to the inaugural Capital Beltway League (CBL) title. He averaged 17.9 points and 2.3 rebounds per game for head coach Louis Wilson in 2012-13, as Riverdale posted a 26-10 record and an 8-2 mark in conference play. He was named the CBL Tournament most valuable player after scoring a team-high 33 points in a 95-89 win over Princeton Day. Johnson went 13-of-15 from the free throw line in the victory.
“We are very excited to welcome Nigel to K-State,” said Weber. “It is always great to find a point guard of his caliber this late in the signing period. He has great quickness and athleticism with the ability to make plays as well as score. He played for a top level high school and for some of the area’s top AAU programs. He also comes from a quality family with parents Catrice and Sidney Johnson.”
Johnson posted 12 games of 20 or more points as a senior in 2012-13, including four 30-point games. He scored a season-high 39 points against National Christian on Jan. 15, which included knocking down 18-of-20 attempts from the free throw line. For the season, he connected on 81.8 percent (108-of-132) from the charity stripe. He was named First Team All-Met by the Washington Post, while he was the area Player of the Year and first team all-area by the Prince George Gazette and Maryland Community News.
Johnson transferred to Riverside Baptist as a senior after playing at Broad Run High School in his hometown of Ashburn, Va., for head coach John Costello. As a junior, he averaged an area-best 29.5 points, 8.4 assists, 4.4 rebounds and 4.0 steals as a junior in 2011-12 en route to helping the school to the Northwest Region playoffs in their inaugural season in Virginia’s AAA classification. He scored 30 or more points on 11 occasions, including a career-best 55 points in a 109-104 overtime loss at Osbourn on Feb. 25, 2012. He went 20-of-22 from the free throw line in the contest to go with five 3-pointers. In addition to leading all D.C., Maryland and Virginia scorers, he set a Virginia single-season AAA record with 211 assists. He was named Second Team All-Met by the Washington Post and was the league’s Player of the Year as a junior.
Johnson hails from the same AAU program – D.C. Assault – as former Wildcats Michael Beasley, Rodney McGruder, Jamar Samuels and Dominique Sutton. His father, Sidney, played several years in the NFL as a defensive back, including stints with the Kansas City Chiefs and Washington Redskins.
Led by 2013 Big 12 Coach of the Year Bruce Weber, Kansas State enjoyed one of its best men’s basketball seasons in 2012-13, posting a 27-8 overall record and 14-4 mark in league play en route to its first-ever Big 12 regular season championship and a fourth consecutive trip to the NCAA Tournament. The 27 wins were the second-most in school history, while the 14 in league play tied the school record held by the 1958-59 team. The league championship was the 18th in school history and the first since the 1976-77 season.
The Wildcats will return eight lettermen in 2013-14, including two starters, highlighted by All-Big 12 honorable mention honoree Shane Southwell. With the addition of Johnson to their class, the team has two scholarships remaining for the 2013-14 season.