Johnson named Nike Coach of the Year


Vicky Oddi
Communications Coordinator
USA Track & Field

INDIANAPOLIS - Brooks Johnson, who coached David Oliver to a #1 world ranking, has been named the 2010 Nike Coach of the Year by USA Track & Field. Johnson will be honored on Saturday, December 4 at the Jesse Owens Awards and Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony, held at the Virginia Beach Convention Center in Virginia Beach, Va. The event is held in conjunction with USA Track & Field's 2010 Annual Meeting.

After a seven-year #1 World ranking drought in the men's 110m hurdles, America is back on top thanks to Brooks Johnson's continued work with David Oliver. In 2010, Johnson's tutelage led Oliver to win the bronze medal at the World Indoor Championships and claim a 15-race unbeaten streak that saw Oliver first tie, and then break, the American record while winning a national championship and the Diamond League's inaugural title.

Oliver became the world's best high hurdler in 2010 by winning nearly everything in sight and posting the five fastest times in the world (and 12 of the top 15 times globally) during the outdoor season, which included his pending American record 12.89 clocking from his win in Paris on July 16.

"It's obviously good to receive recognition for your work," said Johnson. "But any success is a collaboration and there are too many other people involved in this success to name."

A former head coach at Stanford University (1979-92) and California Polytechnic State University (1993-96), Johnson has been coaching at the Olympic level for nearly a half-century. In 1960, he worked with his first Olympian, 110-meter hurdles silver medalist Willie May, and has coached an athlete at every Olympics since 1968. Johnson started working with Oliver in 2004 after he graduated from Howard University. Since then, he has guided Oliver to a bronze medal victory at the 2008 Olympic Games and through an injury-riddled 2009.

"Brooks enjoyed an extraordinary season in 2010, and Nike is pleased to present this award to such a deserving coach," said John Capriotti, Global Sports Marketing Director for Nike. "With David having such a terrific season it shows that Brooks is able to bring out the best in his athletes, and he's very passionate about his craft. I congratulate him on a fine job, he has earned this award and recognition."

For more information on the 2010 Annual Meeting, visit