Cierra Johnson has a lot of things she wants to achieve in her senior year at Blount High School. One of those goals was realized Thursday as she signed a basketball scholarship with the University of Alabama.
“It’s just an emotional feeling, the thought of me going on to the next level,” said Johnson, a 5-foot-10 point guard who chose the Crimson Tide over offers from Mississippi State, Auburn, Georgia, Florida State, South Carolina and other schools.
“Not only were they just concerned about basketball, but the academics,” Johnson said of Alabama. “Other colleges, some of them, wanted to get to me school just to play basketball.”
Johnson has helped Blount reach the state basketball tournament in each of the last three years and is a three-time all-state selection. After averaging 22 points, seven rebounds and eight assists a game as a junior, she was named the state’s 6A Player of the Year and was the runner-up for the Alabama Sports Writers Association’s Miss Basketball award.
She said her remaining goals for her senior year at Blount are to graduate, to win the Miss Basketball award and to help Blount win the state title.
“I will not leave here without a state championship,” she told a large crowd of students and parents on hand at Blount’s auditorium for the signing.
Johnson thanked her parents, coaches and teachers for helping her progress as a student and player. Blount coach Janel Williams said “the sky is the limit” for Johnson on the college level.
“She’s a hard worker,” Williams said of Johnson. “She continues to work on her skills and get better daily. She continues to become a better leader. I think she can really help that program with whatever they ask of her. She can handle the ball, she can shoot it if they want her to. She can defend one through three. Whatever they need from her, I think she will be able to be productive.
“For her to go to the SEC, it just takes our program to another level because we have some other girls that are coming up who might be able to follow right behind her.”