Hall of Fame - Inductee Detail

Johnnie Johnson

Johnnie Johnson

Details

  • Position: Safety
  • School: Texas
  • High School: LaGrange, TX (LaGrange HS)
  • Years: 1976-1979
  • Inducted: 2007
  • Place of Birth: LaGrange, TX
  • Date of Birth: Oct 08, 1956
  • Jersey Number: 27
  • Height: 6-2
  • Weight: 190

Member Biography

Few players get their own theme song, but when Johnnie Johnson took the field the University of Texas band would strike up the Tonight Show Theme Song and then chant �Heeeer�s Johnny.� Johnson played safety for the Longhorns as a slick pass-defender and intimidating hitter. In his final three seasons he was a member of a team that placed among the nation�s top- ten in total defense. Johnnie also excelled on special teams as a punt return specialist. Many of his punt return marks still stand in the UT record books. His numbers would be even greater if at least four long distance returns were not called back for penalties. In his freshman year, Johnson got off to a great start being named a starter in his first game, but a leg injury that started out as a charley horse kept on the sidelines for much of the year. The next year he regained his starting status on a team that went through the regular season undefeated. That year his fourth down tackle inside the Texas five-yard line preserved a win over Oklahoma. He won the first of three All-Southwest Conference honors that year. In an era before the advent of the Thorpe Award, Johnson was named the nation�s top defensive back of 1978 by the New York Downtown Athletic Club. That season Johnson became a unanimous All-America selection. He repeated the honor in his senior year. In the pros he was the 17th overall pick of the 1980 draft and played 11 seasons.