Assistant coaches Brian Ferentz and Reese Morgan meet with the media
Pair of first-year coaches meet with the media
Hawkeye head coach talks staff changes, upcoming spring ball
Iowa head football coach addressed the media during National Signing Day
New coaches and players continue to build defensive line every day
Eric Johnson is in his 15th season as a member of the University of Iowa football staff. Johnson is in his 10th year as Iowa's recruiting coordinator. In addition to his duties as recruiting coordinator, Johnson is in his second season as Iowa's assistant defensive line coach. Johnson also coached Hawkeye tight ends in 2010 and 2011 after assisting with Hawkeye linebackers for two seasons (2008 & 2009). Johnson previously coached Iowa's tight ends for five seasons (2003-07) and served as Iowa's quality control assistant for three years. He was a defensive graduate assistant during his first year (1999) at Iowa.
Iowa has participated in 10 bowl games since 2001. The Hawkeyes won bowl games following the 2008, 2009 and 2010 seasons, defeating ranked opponents in both 2009 and 2010. The Hawkeyes have ranked in the final top 10 of both major polls four times in the past 11 seasons.
Iowa has appeared in six January bowl games since 2001. The Hawkeyes have won six-of-10 bowl games under Kirk Ferentz and his staff, including four January bowl victories. The January Bowl wins have come over Florida (2004 Outback), LSU (2005 Capital One), South Carolina (2009 Outback) and Georgia Tech (2010 Orange).
Iowa has won 89 games over the past 11 seasons, including 52 Big Ten games. The Hawkeyes earned a share of the Big Ten title in both 2002 and 2004 and tied for second in 2009. Iowa has finished in the Big Ten's first division in 10 of the past 12 years.
Johnson has been heavily involved in Iowa's recruiting efforts since joining the Hawkeye staff. Iowa's 2006 recruiting class was ranked extremely high by all the recruiting experts. Iowa's 2005 recruiting class was ranked among the top 10 in the nation by all of the top recruiting services, while Iowa's classes in 2000, 2001, 2003, 2004 and 2009 were all ranked in the nation's top 25. Sporting News ranked Iowa's 2011 recruiting class second best among Big Ten programs and the 2012 class was ranked third among league programs.
Johnson ranked as one of the top ten recruiting coordinators in the country by Tom Lemming in 2001 and was named one of the Top Ten Recruiters in the Big Ten Conference by Rivals.com in 2007.
Under Johnson's direction, Iowa's group of tight ends in 2011 combined for 37 receptions for 394 yards and five touchdowns. Sophomore C.J. Fiedorowicz led the way with three touchdowns among his 16 receptions for 167 yards. Senior Brad Herman signed a free agent contract with the New England Patriots immediately following the 2012 NFL Draft. In 2010, senior Allen Reisner had his best season, ranking third on the team with 42 receptions for 460 yards, while scoring two touchdowns.
The play of Iowa's linebackers played a key role in Iowa's success in 2008 and 2009. Iowa ranked eighth in the nation in scoring defense and total defense in 2009. Iowa led the Big Ten and ranked fifth nationally in scoring defense and pass efficiency defense in 2008. LB Pat Angerer earned All-America recognition following the 2009 season. Angerer was first team all-Big Ten and OLB A.J. Edds was named second team. Angerer led Iowa in tackles in both 2008 and 2009 and was a second round selection (Indianapolis) in the 2010 NFL draft. Edds was selected in the fourth round (Miami). Angerer ranked among the leading tacklers in the NFL in 2011 but was limited to 11 games a year ago.
Tight end Scott Chandler earned second team All-Big Ten honors in 2006 and was selected in the fourth round of the 2007 NFL draft by the San Diego Chargers. As a senior Chandler led the team in touchdown receptions (six), ranked second in receptions (46) and third in receiving yards (591). He ranks 20th in career receiving yards (1,467) and is second among all Iowa tight ends in both yards and receptions (117). Chandler had his best season in the NFL in 2012, with 43 receptions for 571 yards and six touchdowns for the Buffalo Bills. He had 38 receptions for 389 yards and six touchdowns in 2011.
In 2004, Eric coached Tony Jackson, who was selected by Seattle in the 2005 NFL Draft. In 2003 Johnson coached Erik Jensen, who was taken in the NFL Draft by the St. Louis Rams. Jensen joined the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2005 and earned a Super Bowl championship. Six tight ends that started for Iowa under Johnson have been drafted into the NFL. Brandon Myers, a senior in 2008, was selected by Oakland in the sixth round of the 2009 NFL draft and has been a key contributor during his four seasons in the NFL. He led the Raiders in receiving in 2012 with 79 receptions for 806 yards and four touchdowns.
Johnson joined the Iowa staff after serving as a graduate assistant coach at Vanderbilt University from 1996-98, working one season with the linebackers and two years with the defensive backs. At Vanderbilt Eric worked under Coach Woody Widenhofer for one season and under Norm Parker, Iowa's defensive coordinator for 13 seasons, for two years.
Johnson attended Vanderbilt after his prep career at Whitefish Bay HS in Milwaukee, Wis., where he was defensive MVP as a senior linebacker. After a redshirt season Eric was a member of the Vanderbilt squad for one season before being injured.
Johnson was a student assistant coach at Vandy for two seasons, working with Coach Gerry DiNardo. After earning his bachelor's degree in history in 1995, Eric remained at Vanderbilt as Director of Football Operations for one year before serving as a graduate assistant coach. Johnson has completed course work towards his master's degree in health, promotion and education.
Eric was born May 24, 1972 in Milwaukee. Eric and his wife, Patsy, have twin daughters, Jamie and Sydney.
Johnson's Coaching Career
Iowa RC, Ast. DL, 2012-present
Johnson on IOWA
"My family and I feel very fortunate to be a part of the University of Iowa. First and foremost, we work for a tremendous person in Coach Kirk Ferentz. Not only is Coach Ferentz an excellent teacher, but he is a tremendous role model for our players off the field. He gives our players the leadership to have success on the field and in life after football. Second, we work with outstanding student-athletes; people who are of high character and want to have success in all aspects of their life. I think our players and coaches really enjoy being around each other, which helps foster the success we have had at Iowa.
Finally, we live in a tremendous community. A place that is very safe; and the people are friendly. Being the only show in town, everyone loves the Hawkeyes."
Cutline: Patsy and Eric Johnson, with twin daughters Sydney (left) and Jamie (right).