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Penn State Football’s Donovan Johnson Stepping Away From Playing Career

Penn State football cornerback Donovan Johnson will no longer suit up for the Nittany Lions, a team spokesperson confirmed Monday afternoon.

After missing all of the 2020 season with an injury, Johnson isn’t listed on the team’s initial 2021 roster. He’ll instead remain with the program in an off the field role.

“I know it was difficult for Donovan Johnson to step away from his playing career, but ultimately this is what’s best for him,” head coach James Franklin said. “We are excited to still have him as a major part of our program as he continues to work towards his Penn State degree.”

Johnson came to Happy Valley in 2017 as a four-star recruit and redshirted his freshman season. From there, he appeared in 12 games the following season, and then two games his redshirt sophomore season before missing the rest of the 2019 campaign with an upper-body injury.

Before the announcement that he’d miss the entire 2020 season, he was listed as a starter on Penn State’s spring 2020 depth chart. Johnson totaled 16 tackles and three passes defended in 14 games played for the Nittany Lions during his career.

Penn State’s cornerback room certainly takes a hit from a depth perspective with Johnson’s absence, but it’s still slated to be headlined by Tariq Castro-Fields, Joey Porter Jr., Keaton Ellis, and Marquis Wilson.

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About the Author

Gabe Angieri

Gabe is a sophomore majoring in journalism and is an associate editor for Onward State. He grew up in Lindenhurst, NY and has had the absolute misfortune of rooting for the Jets, Mets, and Knicks. If you want to see his rants on all of his teams follow him on Twitter @gabeangieri and direct all hate mail and death threats to [email protected]

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