Johnson signs professional basketball contract in Greece

DJ Johnson looks towards the bench during the basketball game between K-State and Baylor during the Big 12 men's basketball tournament in the Sprint Center on March 9, 2017. The Wildcats beat the Bears 70-64. (File Photo by Emily Starkey | The Collegian)

D.J. Johnson, former K-State men’s basketball forward, signed a contract to play professionally in Lavrio, Greece for the city’s professional basketball club. The 6-foot 9-inch-tall St. Louis native will begin his professional basketball career in August.

Johnson, who joined the Wildcats in 2012, finished with 863 career points, placing No. 41 on the all-time scoring list. Johnson averaged 10.3 points on a 61.7 percent shooting average as a junior and senior.

Johnson is a May 2016 K-State alumnus in social science and was working toward a master’s degree in community planning and design.

Currently ranked eighth in K-State men’s basketball history with 129 games played in his career, Johnson is also ranked fourth in K-State history to successfully connect passes at a rate of 60 percent or better in a single season.

The 59.5 field goal percentage he achieved is a first in K-State history. He achieved a Big 12 Conference best in field goal percentages with 62.3 percent during his senior season.

Johnson totaled more than 500 rebounds in his basketball career at K-State. Johnson finished his time at K-State with 551 rebounds, 23rd in the university’s history. As a senior, Johnson played in 34 of 35 games with 33 starts.

Johnson was named an All-Big 12 Honorable Mention by league coaches in 2017. Additionally, Johnson was also named Academic All-Big 12 Second Team, Spring Big 12 Commissioner’s Honor Roll and received the Ernie Barrett Play Hard Award.

After graduating from Parkway North High School in St. Louis, Johnson selected K-State over a number of offers from other Division One universities, including the University of Alabama, Colorado State University, the University of Memphis, the University of Minnesota and Virginia Polytechnic and State University.

Johnson was the first player to commit to K-State men’s basketball head coach Bruce Weber’s program and the first to sign a national letter of intent April 27, 2012.

Now, Johnson is pursuing his dream to play basketball professionally.

“It’s something new,” Johnson said to The Topeka Capitol-Journal. “I hope I get an opportunity next year to prove that I’m one of the top players in this class.”

I'm DeAundra Allen, co-editor-in-chief and sports editor at the Collegian. I'm a junior in broadcast journalism and pre-law, with a minor in philosophy. I was born in Brighton, Colorado, home of La Placita and the Bulldogs. I moved to Kansas in 2010, and fell in love with press boxes at a young age. In my spare time, I talk about my pets, sports, and work towards going to law school.