H.S. FOOTBALL | Pulaski's Jake Johnson Does Record Numbers

11/07/2016 06:51 PM

Pulaski County defeated Harlan County in round one of the KHSAA state football playoffs Friday night, thanks in part to Jake Johnson.

“When we see such a magnificent feat be accomplished, we feel like it’s all of our record because it’s a Pulaski guy,” Head Coach John Hines said. “We’re proud and thrilled for Jake Johnson, but every kid that’s on the field with him, that ever played with him, that ever blocked for him, that ever threw a pass to him or anything like that has got to feel a part of those records, because when you look back several years from now and you see in the record book the all-time leading receiver in Kentucky high school history in receptions and yards is a Pulaski guy, that’s a big deal for all of us.”

Pulaski County senior and Mr. Kentucky Football candidate, Jake Johnson, broke UofL receiver James Quick’s (who had 280 at Trinity from 2009-2012) record to become the state’s all-time leader in receptions back in August. October 28, in the last week of the regular season, he broke the record for most receiving yards in the state as well.

“I knew I was 233 yards away going into the game, but I wasn’t expecting at all to get 233 yards in one game, because my biggest yardage in a game before that was like 170 or something, so I certainly wasn’t expecting it but it’s a big deal and I’m glad that I have great teammates and coaches and even family that helped me pursue that,” Johnson said after the playoff win.

The yardage record was held by John Cole (with 4,981 from 2004-2007), who played at Somerset, Pulaski’s rival. Johnson said it was nice to top a Somerset guy, but it means more than that.

“Having two guys from Somerset at the top of that list is awesome to look at, so beating that record is awesome, but having two guys from somerset at the top of the records is just as cool,” Johnson explained.

Johnson now has 364 receptions, 5,044 receiving yards and 58 touchdowns (3rd all-time in Kentucky) and counting.

Opposing defenses have to prepare for Johnson at receiver, but he could show up anywhere on the field.

“We’ve used him some at running back, he can run the ball from the quarterback position, runs back kicks, runs back punts, can play any position in the secondary, he’s just an all-around good football player…he’s been an incredible weapon for us on the offensive side and he’s a great player on the defensive side and he’s been a great special teams player in punt returns, kickoff returns. He’s just a guy that’s a danger to score a touchdown every time he gets the ball,” Hines added. “He’s a great kid. He’s one of our leaders,everybody loves him in the locker room, he’s the first one at practice and a hard worker and the kind of guy you like to coach.”

Johnson has played in 3 state championships (2013-2015), but only won one state title (2015). Now that he has cemented his legacy in the record books, he has only one goal.

“The main goal for me and the team is getting back to Bowling Green,” Johnson said. Though he added that being the first Mr. Football from Somerset wouldn’t be so bad either.

The Maroon’s next step to get to Bowling Green comes at Whitley County Friday night at 7:30 p.m.

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