Utah assistant expected to join MSU staff

Brian Johnson was named the 2009 Sugar Bowl MPV after leading Utah to a 31-17 defeat of Alabama. (AP Photo/Dave Martin)

Brian Johnson was named the 2009 Sugar Bowl MPV after leading Utah to a 31-17 defeat of Alabama. (AP Photo/Dave Martin)

By Logan Lowery

Daily Journal

STARKVILLE – On Friday, the Journal reported that former Utah signal caller and current Utes quarterbacks coach/co-offensive coordinator Brian Johnson had interviewed at Mississippi State the previous day.

It appears that interview went well, and the 26-year old will be joining Dan Mullen’s staff.

The school has not confirmed the hire, but the announcement is expected to be forthcoming. Mullen stated on Wednesday that he expected to make a hire within the coming week.

Former Bulldogs offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Les Koenning left on Jan. 15 to take the wide receiver coaching position at his alma mater Texas after serving five years on Mullen’s staff.

It is uncertain what capacity Johnson will serve in on Mullen’s staff – whether he will be the quarterbacks coach and also offensive coordinator or if the coaching staff will be restructured.

Johnson was a three-year starter at quarterback for the Utes in 2005 and 2007-08. He was the MVP of the 2007 Poinsettia Bowl and 2009 Sugar Bowl and also the 2008 Mountain West Offensive Player of the year. He has been coaching at Utah for the last four years, first coaching the quarterbacks from 2010-11 and then adding the offensive coordinator duties in 2012 at only 24 years old.

This past season, Johnson shared the offensive coordinator title with veteran coach Dennis Erickson.

Mullen signed Johnson at Utah as a 16-year-old two-star quarterback from Baytown, Texas, and coached him in 10 games as a true freshman in 2004. Mullen left the following year to become the offensive coordinator at Florida, and Johnson went on to become the cover athlete of the EA Sports video game NCAA College Football 2010.