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Gainesville grad Johnson emerging as leader at LB for Tennessee defense
Vols coach calls him the 'alpha male on defense'
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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — One year after leading the Southeastern Conference in tackles, Tennessee linebacker A.J. Johnson wants to become a better leader of his own defense. Johnson, a Gainesville High grad, made 138 tackles last season and averaged 11.5 per game to finish fourth among all Football Bowl Subdivision players, but he couldn't stop Tennessee's defense from ranking statistically among the worst in school history. Tennessee's new coaching staff doesn't particularly care whether Johnson repeats as the SEC's tackling leader.
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