Since this was Stafon Johnson’s last year of eligibility at USC, and we’ve now heard there’s a good chance he’ll make “full recovery”, the question is, will he be able to play for the Trojans next year?
(Johnson has exhausted eligibility, will NCAA grant him another year?)
Ben Malcolmson of USC’s official football blog has potentially good news on that front tonight, reporting that the school’s compliance office determined today that Johnson indeed has the “potential of getting an extra year of eligibility because of a medical hardship.”
Since Johnson played in at least 30 percent of the team’s games this season and then suffered a season-ending injury, he meets the official criteria to apply for an extra year of NCAA eligibility.
It is not known yet if Johnson wants to go through the application process, which he could initiate later this year or during the offseason. But the precedent for successfully obtaining an extra year of eligibility via medical hardship has been set at USC, as Jeff Byers, Josh Pinkard and Hershel Dennis each recently applied for and received medical hardships.
So if Johnson wants to continue his college career next season, all indications are he’s a virtual lock to get another year of eligibility with the Trojans.
Now the bigger question is, will he actually recover to the extent we’ve been led to believe? I’ll have more on that shortly.