Notebook: Where will Juice produce?

Ocala Trinity Catholic alum Chris "Juice" Johnson is making the transition from safety to linebacker. (Photo courtesy of University Athletic Association)

Published: Thursday, August 18, 2011 at 9:01 p.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, August 18, 2011 at 9:37 p.m.

At Ocala Trinity Catholic high school, Chris "Juice" Johnson was described as a linebacker in a safety's body. Now the opposite may be true.

The true freshman has made a rapid transition from safety to linebacker, according to junior Jon Bostic.

"Juice is starting to pick things up real quickly," Bostic said. "You can tell he's an athlete. He just has a nose for the ball. He can find the ball very well. He's still real new to the position, so he's learning a lot out there.

"He's one of those guys that can play both (linebacker and safety). ... He loves to hit. I think that's one of the reasons they brought him down into the box, because he's real aggressive."

At 5-foot-9 and 205 pounds, Johnson clearly has room to grow. But Bostic doesn't think Johnson's small stature will hamper him.

"I've seen a lot of guys that weren't really that big," Bostic said. "We were telling him Coach (Will) Muschamp had a linebacker when he was at Auburn who maybe was 6-foot. Even Ohio State had one last year. That hasn't discouraged him. He's one of those guys that just wants to go hit somebody."

A leg up

Though he is locked in a neck-and-neck battle with Kyle Christy for the punting job, senior walk-on David Lerner doesn't hide his admiration for the true freshman.

"That kid, he just has a leg," Lerner said. "I wish my leg was that good when I came out of high school. The kid has a boot on him.

"In the upcoming years when he grows up a little bit and realizes what this is — because this is a lot different from high school sports — I think in the future, he'll be very, very good."

Christy (6-foot-3, 184 pounds) was rated the No. 2 punter in nation by and enrolled at UF in January.

Football, volleyball fan day

The football and volleyball teams will be together Saturday for fan day, from 3-6 p.m., in the O'Connell Center. Admission is free and gates will open at 2:30 p.m.

Fans can get autographs from players, coaches, cheerleaders, and Gatorettes on team posters that will be supplied. Outside items cannot be brought in to the event due to NCAA compliance issues.

The volleyball team will scrimmage from 3:30-4:30 p.m., before signing autographs from 4:30-6 p.m.

Across the street, fans can also visit the foyer of the Heavener Football Complex, which will be open on Saturday from 2-6 p.m.

Contact Jeff Barlis at (352) 374-5066 or and follow at

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