Thanks to the presence of Coach Prime (Deion Sanders), the Colorado Buffaloes are venturing into a lot of unfamiliar territories. Now, they have a chance to steal a high school recruit, listed as the state of Louisiana’s second-best athlete and fourth-best overall recruit, from two SEC powerhouses.

Ju’Juan Johnson is an athlete from Lafayette Christian Academy with a quarterback and cornerback background. Johnson is rated as a 4-Star talent in the 2024 recruiting class, and although he’s primarily being recruited as a corner, he’d make more sense for the Buffs at quarterback, where they have limited answers for the 2024 and 2025 seasons.

Johnson recently visited the University of Colorado Boulder campus, and soon after, announced that the date for his commitment would be on Saturday, and that he had narrowed down his selection to just three schools — the Florida Gators, the LSU Tigers, and the Colorado Buffaloes.

Now, considering the fact that Johnson is a product of Louisiana, the Tigers are likely the perceived favorite. However, the Tigers have missed out on six or more of the state’s top-10 recruits in each of the past 10 seasons, and their chokehold on the state is loosening as the NIL money pours in. Plus, there are real reasons to believe that Johnson might simply prefer Boulder.

For starters, there’s the ‘Coach Prime’ factor.

Look no further than Travis Hunter and Cormani McClain — two other hyper-talented cornerbacks with a background at other offensive positions — who prove that sometimes all that matters is the fact the Colorado Buffaloes have Coach Prime, and no one else does.

Second, Johnson seemed to really love Colorado and the campus during his visit.

“[Colorado] was better than I expected and I expected it to be great,” Johnson said, via 247Sports’ director of recruiting, Steve Wiltfong. “This place is beautiful and special. The program is definitely moving in the right direction with Coach Prime and his staff. I got to meet everyone who is a part of the staff and they all let me know how much of a priority I am.”

Johnson’s handling of social media only seems to underline that point. Ever since Colorado and Coach Prime offered Ju’Juan Johnson a scholarship, the corresponding tweet has been Johnson’s pinned tweet, up until he announced the date for his commitment. Now, if Colorado was his first offer or his most recent offer, that might be understandable, but the Buffaloes’ offer came after the LSU Tigers’ offer, and before the Florida Gators’ offer.

Last, but not least, is the quarterback factor.

If Johnson has his heart set on being a Power-5 quarterback, the Colorado Buffaloes are the best choice of his final three. He would immediately become the second-highest-rated freshman quarterback recruit in program history.

Meanwhile, LSU has recruited a higher-rated quarterback prospect in the 2021 class, the 2022 class, and the 2024 class, and has one in the 2023 class rated just .004 worse than Johnson. Plus, Florida has 2024’s No. 4 quarterback, a 5-Star, already committed. So, the path to him getting those quarterback opportunities would be much harder to see at either of those schools than it would be at CU, where Johnson would seemingly be a shoo-in.

We might not know where Johnson is set to play college ball until Saturday, but we definitely know the Colorado Buffaloes will be watching the situation closely.