You see, back in the summer of 2010, Tyreke, the younger brother of current FSU 2015 commit De'Andre Johnson of Jacksonville First Coast, told me as much.
De'Andre had just won the Overall Eighth Grade MVP and Quarterback MVP at the National Underclassmen Combine at Orlando's Jones High. Upon talking with him afterward, however, the kid brother, then a fifth grader, insisted on being part of the interview.
"I remember that," says dad, Earl Johnson. "He wouldn't let his older brother have his big moment."
Tyreke was talking big that day. The fifth grader said his fastest 40-yard-dash time was 4.5 seconds and when asked if he could beat older brother De'Andre in a footrace, he said, "Any time."
To that, "De'Andre said, "Well my fastest time was a 4.4, so … "
He was a little guy back then, as are most fifth-graders, standing about three inches shorter than De'Andre, but he might pass his older brother in height soon. He's listed at 6-foot, 170 pounds. He plays receiver, running back and linebacker at Jacksonville's Trinity Prep, where coach Verion Dorminey told MaxPreps recently that he'll definitely start as an eighth-grader next season.
"He's put together like a Greek god as a seventh-grader," Dorminey told MaxPreps, who also said he'll likely see quarterback duties, as well, next season. "Not only is he a smart kid, but he has a lot of football knowledge for as young as he is. He's gonna be the kid that will be the leader."
And what does De'Andre think of all this attention?
"It's all good. He's big now, and he's good," De'Andre said. "It just goes to show that all the hard work is paying off.
"He works really hard and he's always been in my corner, cheering me on. It's good to see some of the discipline rubbing off."
De'Andre himself was hit up early in his career. His first scholarship offer came during his freshman year from Clemson, and then Florida State was close thereafter.
"I don't think it's too early," said De'Andre, who committed to FSU last summer between his freshman and sophomore years. De'Andre has been the First Coast starting QB since he walked on campus and he's only lost two games — the 2011 Class 7A state title game to Bradenton Manatee and an upset in the first round of the 2012 Class 7A state playoffs against Gainesville Buchholz.
"It all depends on the maturity level and we have a great support system. It gives you a chance to weigh your opinions for a very long time."
Like De'Andre said, it's more about the maturity level and the way the youngster handles it when considering these early scholarship offers. Tyreke has not been offered a scholarship, yet.
In all actuality, these young, budding stars are never really offered an official scholarship in writing. There might be a handshake that comes after the likes of Jimbo Fisher says we'd like you to come play for us in five years. Official written offers can not be extended until August of a player's senior year.
How does the NCAA enforce a rule against spoken offers? They don't.
Many argue it's too early. I'm hesitant to say one way or the other, since some kids can handle it quite well. But if someone is going to argue that it's too early to recruit kids to play college football, I might argue that the same could be said for drug dealers recruiting kids to push their dope. Nobody is stopping those clowns, either.
So, FSU wants to offer a kid a glimpse into a future as a student-athlete? So be it.
"Florida State is on him," says Earl Johnson. "They were going to offer him but they thought he was in eighth grade. When they found out he was just a seventh-grader they said they would probably offer him next year. They want him bad though."
As will tons of others. De'Andre might hold the key to that recruitment. He's already playing FSU recruiter as he enters his junior season. He helped draw in a couple of Jacksonville recruits already in 2014 stars linebacker Kain Daub and defensive end Blake McClain, both of Jacksonville Sandalwood.
De'Andre said he's also working on two other 2014 prospects, including Kevin Tolliver II, a cornerback at Trinity Christian.
He expects to return to the Citrus Bowl this year and the state title game.
"Oh, yes sir, we're coming back," he said.
And about that footrace with Tyreke?
"He still can't beat me," De'Andre said. "He thinks he can, but he can't."
Chris Hays is the Sentinel's recruiting coverage coordinator and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow us on Twitter at @Os_Recruiting and Facebook at Orlando Sentinel Recruiting and now on Pinterest at Orlando Recruiting.