PIKEVILLE, Ky. – Joe Johnson will not return to Pikeville College as head football coach.
Johnson is leaving the NAIA school after two seasons as head coach of the Bears.
Johnson came to Pikeville as defensive coordinator for the 2008 season by former Head Coach Mac Bryan and was promoted to head coach following Bryan’s resignation in the spring of 2009. Johnson maintained his role as defensive coordinator throughout his tenure at Pikeville.
“Joe Johnson is a first-class person, a strong man of God and someone I’m glad to have gotten to know,” said Robert Staggs, who made the promotion of Johnson to head coach his first major decision as director of athletics. “We’re forever grateful for his time here at Pikeville College and appreciate everything he has done for the school and our football program.”
Johnson took over the football program following a 2-9 season in 2008. The Bears were 3-8 in Johnson’s first campaign as head coach and finished 2-8 last season.
He was the fourth head coach in the 10-year history of the program, following Zak Willis, Jerry Mynatt and Bryan.
Johnson is a native of nearby Abingdon, Va., and has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Emory and Henry College in Emory, Va. His experiences on both the college and high school levels are vast; included in that is a two-year stint as head coach at North Greenville College in Tigerville, S.C.
In addition, Johnson was defensive coordinator and secondary coach at Lenoir-Rhyne College; recruiting coordinator, secondary coach and kicking coach at Charleston Southern University; director of football operations and recruiting coordinator at Appalachian State University; and assistant head coach, defensive coordinator and recruiting coordinator at Lees-McRae College.
A search for Johnson’s successor will begin immediately. In the interim, Staggs and Rick Bentley, assistant director of athletics, will oversee the program.