FRC football coach resigns

Coach J.D. Johnson
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Feather Publishing

Feather River College head football coach J.D. Johnson announced his resignation effective at the end of April. Johnson has been with the FRC Golden Eagles since 2009, where he started as defensive coordinator and assistant head coach before moving up to head football coach during the 2010 season.

Johnson plans to relocate from Quincy to be closer to his family. FRC will develop the hiring timeline and begin the recruitment for a new football head coach in the next few months. Johnson will continue teaching his online courses for FRC throughout the semester while he moves closer to help his family.

FRC offensive coordinator Josh White and defensive coordinator Mike Haydon will co-lead the student-athlete recruiting process for the upcoming season until a head coach is named.

Under coach Johnson’s direction, Feather River College football earned numerous individual and team awards. In 2013, FRC had a California Community College Football Coaches Association all-American player, CCCFCA Region II Player of the Year, and Mid-Empire Conference Player of the Year. Fifteen of Johnson’s players were named to the all-California first team since 2010, while 36 players earned all-conference honors and three different players were named California Community College Athletic Association Northern California Football Player-of-the-Week.

Only seven school records exist that have not been broken by one of the teams Johnson coached at FRC. His teams set a total of 71 individual offensive, individual defensive, special teams, team offense and team defense records at every level, including the most consecutive wins in school history.

“What I am most proud of is the academic all-state awards that our players have earned. In the past four years, FRC always had either one or two players on this elite list from the entire state of California,” said Johnson.

The FRC football team has transferred numerous players. Feather River College Superintendent/President Dr. Kevin Trutna spoke of the success of the program.

“Walking across the stage at graduation during the past two years that I have been at FRC, I have seen our football student-athletes transfer to NAIA schools such as Montana State University-Northern in the Frontier Conference all the way up to Division I powerhouses like the University of Tennessee in the Southeastern Conference. Our student-athletes coached by J.D. routinely end up attending a university and playing at the next level.”

The FRC football team averaged a 2.65 G.P.A. since 2011, and received multiple individual scholar-athlete awards. Between 2010 and 2013, FRC produced 44 football transfer students who combined to earn more than $2 million in scholarships.

The FRC Golden Eagles participate in the Mid-Empire Conference of the Central Division as part of the California Community College Athletic Association. The conference includes College of the Siskiyous, Diablo Valley College and Sacramento City College.

Feather River College compiled a 6-4 record in 2013 going up against a very difficult schedule including opening the season against eventually undefeated state champion Butte College.

Johnson played at the University of Northern Colorado, where he earned his degree in journalism and mass communications and helped lead the Bears to the school’s first ever Division II national championship in 1996.

His coaching career includes experience at Colorado State University as an offensive assistant under head coach Sonny Lubick, where he coached several NFL players including wide receiver David Anderson (Texans, Broncos, Redskins), quarterback Bradlee Van Pelt (Broncos, Texans) and current Denver Broncos tight end Joel Dreessen.

Johnson also worked at the University of Wisconsin-Stout in 2008-09 as assistant coach for running backs, Southern Oregon University in 2006-07 as defensive coordinator, Colorado State University in 2003 – 05 as assistant coach for quality control, Loras College in 2001-02 as defensive coordinator, Nichols College in 1999 – 2001 as defensive coordinator and Saint Mary’s College of California as graduate assistant coach for linebackers and special teams.

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