The Journey of Rubio Long Snapper Damon Johnson

I wanted to tell you a quick story, that very few of you actually know about, regarding Rubio Long Snapper Damon Johnson.

Damon, a 2016 Five Star Rubio Long Snapper from CA, was offered a full scholarship to West Virginia back in June heading into his senior year. He took his trip there during the fall, fell in love with it and committed to be their next Long Snapper in October of his senior year.

On the Friday of VEGAS XXVII in January (several months after his commitment), Damon was packing the car for the weekend and was contacted by a Graduate Assistant from West Virginia.The G.A. informed Damon that West Virginia was not going to honor their commitment to Damon and there would be no scholarship for him as they were going to give it to another position. (I have been working with Long Snappers for well over a decade and this is the first time I have ever seen something like this happen. First time.) 

Damon was beyond dumbfounded and completely thrown for a loop. Down in the dumps would be the biggest understatement in the history of mankind. This is a kid, who is very quiet and doesn’t show much emotion, having to deal with a major ordeal before one of the biggest weekends of his life. Damon who was so loyal to West Virginia that he told many schools (North Carolina, Memphis, Portland State and BYU) that he was done with his recruiting to get ready for the Mountaineers.

Imagine heading to a Rubio Long Snapping Vegas competition with a full scholarship under your belt, knowing you could breathe a little easier and having it taken from you (out of your control) at the very last second. 99.9% of the Long Snappers and their families would have not shown up or been a visual mess. With the Johnson family, you would never be able to tell anything was even wrong. I am still amazed at how well they handled it all.

I told him and his family to simply relax and that EVERYTHING HAPPENS FOR A REASON. I knew we could be headed for an uphill battle, but even I didn’t realize just how much of a fight it would entail.

After a call, USC immediately jumped on the Damon bandwagon and wanted him asap. A top tier Rubio Long Snapper is not always around after signing day and one had just appeared. Damon began communication with the Trojans but soon found out his English score on the SAT was simply too low to be a preferred walk-on at USC. This is where Damon goes from a boy, to a man.

Damon was told he would have to go to a JC, maintain a 3.5 GPA, take eight classes from summer through fall, and if he received a C or lower, he would disqualify himself. The eight classes had to be core classes (fluff elective classes would NOT be accepted).

This is a BIG reach for Damon. He is (was) not, let’s say, a very motivated and/or highly academic student….in the past. School was something Damon simply tolerated in order to play football and hang out with his friends. His entire mindset would have to change.

He stuck his head in the books, camped out in the library and hired any tutors he could find to help him TRY to achieve his goal of getting to USC. In the summer, he took English, History and Art History. In the fall, he took English, Biology with a lab, Sociology, History and Criminal Justice. He studied and studied and studied and studied and studied….well, you get my point.

About one week ago, Damon received his final grades from Citrus Junior College and found he had done it! USC already knew and congratulated him on his accomplishment. He would be able to get into USC and play football for them. To put even more icing on the cake, the Trojans presented Damon with a four year college scholarship to USC instead of a preferred walk-on!

Damon accepted, signed right away and will be enrolling at USC on January 4th.

I am EXTREMELY proud of Damon and his family. I really don’t think Damon, or his family, even believed he could do it. There were many calls, texts, emails between us all. Damon, and his family, have traveled an incredible emotional journey over the past year. His story is one that I will tell countless times as I am sure he and his family will as well.

Remember, recruiting is never easy and no two stories are the same. Patience is a key virtue throughout and, never forget, everything happens for a reason.

Congratulations once again to Rubio Long Snapper Damon Johnson! YOU DID IT….on the field and, more importantly, off the field as well.


Rubio Long Snapping is, by far, the biggest and best resource for Long Snappers in the country. Offering the best instruction and most exposure in the world. Rubio Long Snapping can help you to become the best snapper you can be!
In just 12 years, Chris Rubio, President and Owner of Rubio Long Snapping, has become the #1 Long Snapping instructor in the country and the go-to man when a college coach needs a Long Snapper. Colleges from across the country rely on “Rubio’s” word day in and day out on who the best Long Snappers are in the country. Rubio Long Snapping has assisted in over 300 Long Snappers earning FULL SCHOLARSHIPS to major colleges and universities just for Long Snapping and many into the NFL as well.



  1. Pete Hadley says

    That is a feel good story. Congratulations to Damon for his dedication and determination!!!

  2. Suzie Shottenkirk says

    That is AMAZING AND SO VERY HAPPY FOR HIM! To have that kind of determination is one of the best attributes you can have! What Proud parents and he deserves everything he gets in life! Lesson is to NEVER give up! Congratulations Damon I’m glad your dreams have came true!

  3. Fight on Damon!!!

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