By: Will Burchfield
Michigan has beefed up its coaching staff, adding Michael Johnson to an already impressive group of assistants beneath Jim Harbaugh.
Johnson, who spent 11 years coaching in the NFL from 2000 to 2010, was most recently the head coach at The King’s Academy, a prep school in Sunnyvale, Calif.
While Johnson’s resume can’t be questioned, the Wolverines may have ulterior motives in bringing him aboard.
The coach’s son, Michael Johnson Jr., is the top-ranked dual-threat quarterback in the 2019 class, per 247Sports. The four-star sophomore from California, where he attends TKA, has reportedly garnered offers from Florida State, Louisville, Arizona, California and Mississippi State.
For what it’s worth, Michigan will welcome highly-touted pro-style quarterback Dylan McCaffrey to campus in the fall. McCaffrey would theoretically be a junior in Johnson Jr.’s first season of college eligibility. The Wolverines also have freshman quarterbacks Michael Sessa and Brandon Peters in tow, both of whom will conceivably be on the roster in the fall of 2019.
Johnson’s football background is extensive. He was a quarterback for Arizona and Akron in the late 80s, after which he spent five years playing semi-pro football. He landed his first college coaching gig at Oregon State in 1997, before making the transition to the NFL three years later. Stops in San Diego, Atlanta and Baltimore ultimately led him to San Francisco, where he became the team’s offensive coordinator in 2010.
Johnson rejoined the college ranks a year later, serving as the offensive coordinator – and later, interim head coach – at UCLA. He took his former job at TKA in 2014.
Now it’s on to Ann Arbor.
Per MLive.com, “The specifics of Johnson’s job at this time are unclear, though it won’t be an off-field position — at least right now — as Michigan’s on-field assistant staff is filled.
“The NCAA is scheduled to vote later this spring, though, on whether or not it’ll allow Football Bowl Subdivision coaching staffs to add another on-field assistant — bringing the number to 10.”