Over recent years, the city of Ottawa has seen a number of players in the game of football have success. It has been great to see from a fan’s perspective, a player’s perspective and a coach’s perspective as well to see this. There have been players having success on and off of the field, in the NCAA, the NFL, the CFL and also in the classroom and in the office in the city of Ottawa and most recently we have seen the media come together and realize just that. Now we have this growing platform for younger athletes to get better and expose themselves as world class athletes and world class human beings. That in a whole has been something that Ottawa resident and wide receiver on the football field, Shane Johnson has been able to do growing up and he is now moving on to be successful in football. “When I started playing football I fell in love with it,” said Shane Johnson, “It was a sport that I could really be myself and here in Ottawa I have been able to build relationships with my teammates and with my coaches so it can also be fun.”
As fun as the game may be and as much as he loves the game of football, for Johnson, football was not only something to do for fun, it was something he can do to build a future with. While talking to him about his vision growing up he mentioned, “I grew up in New Orleans(, Louisiana) and if you know anything about Louisiana or the USA in general you would know that football is big there. Athletes don’t just play football for fun they want to make it their job later on and even though I didn’t play football when I lived there I was exposed to people with those visions of playing football for their future and it’s something you see a lot of in the states so when I picked it up I had a little bit of the same mentality to it.” Shane Johnson was born and lived in Louisiana until about 2005 after Hurricane Katrina had hit New Orleans and left a lot of damage. Luckily for Johnson and his family though they were able to come to Ottawa, where his mother had already been.
In Ottawa, as a kid Shane Johnson played a lot of sports but he mentions, “I didn’t play football.” and he explained, “I played a lot of soccer. I honestly wanted to play football a lot but it took a lot of convincing for my mom to let me play.”
Being able to start playing football in Ottawa finally, Johnson started with St Peters and then got serious about the sport more in 2019 with the North Gloucester Giants which because of the COVID-19 Pandemic was his most recent season. With the Giants, he was able to showcase his skills and in all he put on a show which was great to see for him, “I had some success that year.” Shane Johnson said, “I started to feel more comfortable playing the game and I was able to show more of my size and my speed against the talent I played against.”
That season spent with the Giants just recently as well as the other seasons that he has played here in Ottawa gave him a more understanding of what he wants to do as a football player and he is adamant that he will have a future in football. A future in football is something that several players in the city of Ottawa have and have had in the past, bringing Johnson to the group as he says, “I’ve always wanted to do something big in football and I hope to make it to the NFL but its not an easy path to the NFL so I’m setting smaller goals for myself, the next is to be the best University athlete I can be.” His next goal, to be the best University athlete possible will be able to happen at Windsor University where he will be playing in the OUA of the U-Sport level in Canada, replying to his commitment he said, “Yes, it’s all official now and I’m so excited to have this opportunity to play there and play college football!”
College football in 2020 was something that was on but that also was off, similar to football for Shane Johnson. Some leagues and conferences had a season this past year, some had a shortened season and some didn’t have a season at all, for Shane Johnson, he didn’t have a season and neither did Windsor University so the two sides of the story will be fresh for what we hope will be a 2021 season. Johnson, even-though he hasn’t played in over a full year, like a lot of athletes you hear of the most he has been staying ready and working on being the best he can moving forward in his football career. “I know a lot of people are going to be using this time off as an excuse to not work harder but for me its given me an excuse to work.” said Shane, “I have been getting right on all aspects, I’ve been in the gym, I’ve stayed right mentally and I’ve been eating healthy too so I can be the best receiver possible.” The 6-foot-2 receiver had also said in my interview with him, “I have been putting myself in every camp and football event possible I have done formula 11 which helped me a lot with my footwork and receiver techniques being able to train with some CFL players and then another one I did was Uplift 613 and that helped me match myself up against other talent so it has really been great.”
From all of the football he has watched and played over the years and all of the training that Shane Johnson has been able to do over this past year, Johnson has done the best of his ability to be the best receiver he can be but he has also watched a lot of film on his favourite players. When talking about some NFL receivers he likes to watch he said, “being where I’m from, I’m a Saints fan and I wear number 12 on the field because of Marques Colston who wore 12 for the Saints. I watched him growing up and he was my favourite player and then also as a Saints fan I have watched a lot of Michael Thomas but overall when I watch these guys and I train I just try to be a fast receiver that can get open and make a play in the open field.”