James Johnson was officially named Head Coach of the men’s basketball program in a press conference on Tuesday afternoon. After spending two weeks at Clemson, Johnson returns to Blacksburg where he was an assistant coach for the last five seasons.
Jim Weaver began the press conference with this statement.
“I am very pleased to welcome James Johnson as the new head men’s basketball coach at Virginia Tech,” Weaver said. “He is an individual with 19 years of coaching experience, who has spent the last five years here at Virginia Tech. He knows and has recruited most of our current players. We believe that he is the right person at this moment in time.”
Johnson served as Seth Greenberg’s Associate Head Coach last season, and he was known as a top recruiter during his time in Blacksburg. He recruited current players Erick Green, Cadarian Raines, C.J. Barksdale and Robert Brown, and he also led the initial recruitment of Dorian Finney-Smith.
“Virginia Tech and the Hokie Nation have a special place in my heart and I am blessed and excited for the opportunity to become the head basketball coach,” Johnson said. “I look forward to working with a great group of young men and moving forward with this program.”
In the past, Johnson has also served as an assistant at George Mason, where he coached in the Final Four. Other stops include Penn State, Old Dominion, Elon, Ferrum, and Hargrave Military Academy. He is one of the top players in the history of Ferrum basketball, and he also served as a squad leader in the Army National Guard while playing college football.
Johnson will make an initial salary of $680,000. He will have approximately $480,000 to spend on assistant coaches, which is the same Clemson spends.