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Utes stays in-house for new offensive coordinator

Brian Johnson Getty Images

A little less than two months after Norm Chow left to become the head coach at Hawaii, Utah has found a replacement offensive coordinator.

And, as it turns out, the Utes didn’t have to look very far.

Utah confirmed via a press release Thursday morning that Brian Johnson has been promoted to coordinator.  The 24-year-old Johnson — he’ll turn 25 later this month — has served as head coach Kyle Whittingham‘s quarterbacks coach, and will continue in that capacity as well.

“After spending the past month conducting a national search for an offensive coordinator, it became very apparent that we had the best candidate for the job right here on our own staff,” said Whittingham in a statement. “Brian is a leader and a special coaching talent, just as he was a special player, and he is the right person to lead our offense.”

Johnson is the winningest quarterback in Utah history — 26-7 as the starter during a career that spanned from 2005-08 — and was named the MVP of the Utes’ two-touchdown Sugar Bowl win over Alabama following the 2008 season.

Johnson was hired by Whittingham before the start of the 2010 season and, as far as we can tell, he is officially the youngest coordinator on either side of the ball at the Div. 1-A level.

“I am excited that Coach Whittingham has given me this opportunity and I am prepared for the challenge,” said Johnson. “I’m looking forward to working with a great coaching staff and putting together a productive offense that will help us win a conference championship. I’ve had many good mentors as a player and a coach, including Dan Mullen, Andy Ludwig, Aaron Roderick and Norm Chow.”

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2 Responses to “Utes stays in-house for new offensive coordinator”
  1. parkcityute says: Feb 2, 2012 7:34 PM

    Good choice. Brian is a Ute through and through. He has a great work ethic, knows the offense and has a great relationship with the players.

    Good news, great potential…Go Utes!

  2. Pac12Ute says: Feb 4, 2012 6:27 AM

    I’m very skeptical about this hire. I was confused as to why they hired him as the quarterbacks coach when he was pretty much an average quarterback throughout his time on the field. What I’m hoping comes out of this is a return to the offensive style that actually earned them a place at the Pac-12 table and was Brian’s bread and butter… a modified spread.

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