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Former NIU linebacker Jawuan Johnson announces transfer to TCU

The former Huskie will get a chance to prove himself in the Big 12 on a graduate transfer.

NCAA Football: Northern Illinois at San Diego State Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

After a monster 2017 campaign for the Northern Illinois Huskies, linebacker Jawuan Johnson announced on Instagram he intends to transfer to TCU for the upcoming football season as a graduate transfer.

He is eligible immediately after he graduates from NIU in May and will jump right into a healthy position battle, as TCU will be without its leading tackler form last season in Travin Howard.

Johnson was a key part of an NIU defense which ranked amongst the best in the country in total defense, with the team finishing 26th in the country in total offense, 16th in run defense and 1st in the nation in tackles-for-loss, per NCAA.com.

Johnson himself finished with an impressive 98 total tackles, adding on four sacks, five forced fumbles and five interceptions (two of which were returned for touchdowns) in the 2017 campaign, establishing himself as one of the best linebackers both in the MAC and in the college scene.

The move comes after reports Johnson was frustrated by not being recognized by the Mid-American Conference for his efforts on the field, combined with a desire to play closer to home.

Johnson, who was chosen to the all-MAC third team in 2017, said as much to Josh Tolentino of the DeKalb Daily-Chronicle back in March:

In the same interview with Tolentino, Johnson assured Huskie fans he was appreciative of their support during his tenure in DeKalb, saying “it’s nothing but love and it will always be love” in regards to NIU.

Johnson, who played football New Boston, Texas and has family currently living in Texarkana, also wanted to play closer to home for his final year of eligibilty. Per Adam Rittenberg of ESPN, Johnson was also slated to visit Alabama, while Tolentino has previously reported Johnson was also interested in SMU and Baylor.