Coach Johnson's contract extension will see him head Illinois wrestling through at least the 2005 season.
Feb. 17, 2000
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - University of Illinois Director of Athletics Ron Guenther announced today that the University's Board of Trustees have approved a three-year contract extension for head wrestling coach Mark Johnson. Johnson, who is in his eighth at Illinois, has received an extension which will keep him at the helm of the Illini wrestling program through at least the 2005 season.
"My family and I are excited about the extension," Johnson said. "This is where I want to be. My staff and I have worked hard at turning our program into a top ten team and I feel we can challenge for the national title on a yearly basis. The University of Illinois is where I'd like to retire"
In 1993 Johnson took over a program that had posted two winning seasons in the previous 10 years and has sinced turned the Illini into a national power. He has led the Illini to five consecutive top 12 NCAA finishes, produced three individual national champions, 15 all-Americans, 54 Big Ten placewinners and an impressive 43 NCAA qualifiers. Johnson is in his eighth season as head coach of the Fighting Illini, with a record of 91-24-1 (.789) and is already the third-winningest coach in Illinois history, behind B.R. Patterson (99 wins) and H.E. Kenney (94 wins). He has a career record of 111-29-3 (.787) in 10 years
"Mark Johnson is at the top of his profession and, with high standards on and off the mat for his student-athletes, has developed Illinois wrestling into a consistent national contender," Ron Guenther said. "We're pleased to keep Mark as part of the Illini family as he continues to pursue a national championship."