Tuesday, May 15, 2012
Entering the Hall: Jimmy Johnson
By Heather Dinich
Over a span of five seasons, former Miami coach Jimmy Johnson helped set the elite standard that so many Hurricanes fans are still desperately clamoring for today.
In May of 1984, Johnson came to Coral Gables from Oklahoma State and took what Howard Schnellenberger built and topped it with what many consider to be one of the best college football teams in the sport’s history.
Led by Vinny Testaverde, Miami’s first Heisman Trophy winner, the Canes finished the 1986 regular season 11-0 and were ranked No. 1 in the country for 15 weeks. It was the school’s first undefeated season. Johnson rose to the top of college football with his program, where he compiled a stunning 52-9 record and won one national championship. In 1987, Johnson led Miami to a 12-0 finish, including a 20-14 win over Oklahoma in the Orange Bowl to win the national title. During his final three seasons in Miami, Johnson lost a total of two games.
In 1989, Johnson moved on to the Dallas Cowboys, where he coached from 1989-1993 and won back-to-back Super Bowls -- one of only six coaches in the NFL to accomplish that feat. In 1996, he came back to Miami to coach the Dolphins. Schnellenberger left the door open for Johnson, but he knocked it down with a Hall of Fame career.