During his 41-year baseball-coaching career, Mark Johnson participated faithfully in FCA Huddles across the country, often serving as speaker at FCA events and working as the head baseball clinician at FCA Camps. Johnson served on local FCA Boards of Directors in two locations, and was the recipient of FCA’s Jerry Kindall Character in Coaching Award in 2007, presented annually to the college or high school baseball coach who best exemplifies the Christian principles of character, integrity, serving, teamwork and excellence on and off the baseball field. His family was also active in the ministry; including his wife, Linda, who led coaches’ wives Bible studies, and his sons, who became Christians at FCA Camps before continuing their involvement with FCA.
An America Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA) Hall of Fame inductee in 2001, Johnson spent 16 years as an assistant at New Mexico, Arizona, Mississippi State and Texas A&M before becoming the Texas A&M head coach in 1984. The six-time Conference Coach of the Year, spent 21 years on the College Station campus before taking over at Sam Houston State in 2007 where he spent five more seasons as the Bearkats’ head coach. In 1999 he was named the Sporting News’ National Coach of the Year after leading A&M to its second of two College World Series appearances during his tenure. Later that summer he also earned the United States Olympic Committee’s Coach of the Year honor following his leadership of the Team USA Collegiate National squad. During his career, Johnson garnered the Lefty Gomez Award (2012) and the Ethics in Coaching Award (2009) from the ABCA, led his teams to 16 NCAA Tournament appearances, and was awarded Regional Coach of the Year honors four times.