Former Florida star Keyontae Johnson transfers to Kansas State after being cleared to play

By Staff
August 20, 2022
Former Florida star Keyontae Johnson transfers to Kansas State after being cleared to play

Image Credit: Alex de la Osa / UAA

About five months after being honored on the court at the Stephen C. O’Connell Center in what was expected to be his final collegiate game, former Florida Gators forward Keyontae Johnson has committed to transfer to the Kansas State Wildcats in an effort to continue his playing career. Johnson, who had been medically disqualified from playing since collapsing on the court in December 2020, has been cleared to return to the court, according to Stadium’s Jeff Goodman.

Johnson will play his former team when Florida visits Kansas State on Jan. 28, 2023, as part of the SEC-Big 12 Challenge.

After collapsing in that game against Florida State, Johnson spent the remainder of the 2020-21 season as a player assistant for UF. While he considered declaring for the 2021 NBA Draft that offseason, he chose to return to the program as he sought medical clearance from doctors and team trainers.

Unfortunately for Johnson, that clearance never came despite his desire to suit up for the Gators. He resumed his role as a player assistant for the 2021-22 campaign and served as a steady presence for his teammates in the locker room amid significant offseason changes across the roster and coaching staff.

There was no expectation Johnson would play for Florida under new head coach Todd Golden, which was made clear on May 1 when he entered the transfer portal ahead of the deadline. At that time, it was not known whether Johnson would be medically cleared to play. Few details were ever made public about Johnson’s medical condition.

There was also an extenuating circumstance that was thought to complicate his playing future as Johnson was accused of first-degree felony sexual assault in April. However, he was never arrested, and prosecutors dropped charges against Johnson over the summer citing a lack of evidence.

Johnson was on pace to graduate at the conclusion of the spring 2022 semester. He will have one year of eligibility remaining. The former 2020 All-SEC first team selection and 2020-21 Preseason SEC Player of the Year averaged 14 points and seven rebounds in his last full season for the Gators (2019-20).

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