When you dominate the way Diamond Johnson did at the high school level it’s an interesting transition to the next level.
Playing for Coach Stringer at Rutgers first means committing to defense. That became clear for Diamond and any other player who’s played for Stringer from the first day of practice.
But as a point guard and offensive threat, Johnson could be the most lethal that Stringer has ever had. Her fellow freshman teammate at Rutgers Liz Martino told us over the summer that Diamond is “unstoppable”.
When we spoke during Rutgers’s virtual media day, Diamond talked about what she’s been learning early on at this level. She mentioned points like freezing her cuts, learning how to really get open, and how much faster and stronger the game has become even just in practice.
One thing she emphasized in particular when I asked her about what she’s been learning from Coach Stringer was the details.
Everything is about details. I’m the type of player, I just play. I’m definitely willing to learn, but I also like playing a lot. So when she actually teaches me the little things, at first it was like why we gotta learn this… but as the practice is going on and I’m watching the film I see how important it is the things she’s teaching us.
As she feels out her pace at the college level, Diamond is also learning from the senior leader and reigning conference scoring leader Arella Guirantes, who Diamond couldn’t wait to play with.
Since practicing and playing pick-up together, Guirantes says she’s excited about playing with Johnson and the potential of their flow together.
Diamond also talks about breaking down segments of the game when she watches film and continuing to develop her understanding of a good shot versus a bad shot.