Contact: Tom Nelson (320-308-2141)
Steve Johnson Named New Assistant Coach at St. Cloud State
St. Cloud, Minn. -- St. Cloud State University Director of Athletics Dr. Morris Kurtz announced today that Steve Johnson has been named as an assistant coach for the men’s hockey team at the University.
Johnson will replace Eric Rud, who was recently named the new head coach for the Green Bay Gamblers of the USHL. Rud had served as an assistant coach at SCSU since the 2005-06 season.
“Steve (Johnson) has been one of the most successful coaches in the history of the USHL and he is one of the great players in the history of the WCHA. His experiences as a player and a coach will be a huge asset for our program,” said SCSU head coach Bob Motzko.
Johnson brings a wealth of hockey experience to St. Cloud State, both as a player and as a coach. He most recently served as the head coach of the Fargo Force of the USHL during the 2009-10 season.
“I am very excited to be coming to St. Cloud State and getting back into the WCHA,” Johnson said. “I’ve gotten to know Coach Motzko and Coach (Mike) Gibbons very well over THE years, and I am looking forward to becoming a part of the program at St. Cloud State.”
At Fargo, Johnson’s team charted a 45-22 overall record and a second place finish in the 2010 Clark Cup finals after replacing former Fargo coach Dean Blais in 2009.
Johnson began coaching in the USHL with a stop at Fargo-Moorhead in 1995-96. He was then named the head coach of the Lincoln Stars the next season.
In his first season at Lincoln, Johnson guided his club to a 40-13-1 record and a Clark Cup championship. This would mark the start of a decade long run at Lincoln, which saw Johnson’s teams win 30-plus games nine times during his tenure.
He was named the USHL Coach of the Year in 1996, 2000 and 2001, and he led the Stars to a second Clark Cup title (USHL postseason championship) in 2003. Johnson also guided Lincoln to Anderson Cups (USHL regular season champions) in 2003, 2001 and 2000.
Johnson’s USHL coaching record stands at 470-223-54, and his 470 victories ranks fourth in the league records for most career wins. Johnson’s career win percentage of .665 ranks fifth in league records.
A Grand Forks, N.D. native, Johnson skated for the University of North Dakota from 1984 to 1988. He earned All-WCHA and All-America status during his collegiate career, and also helped guide UND to a national title in 1987. In his senior season, Johnson was a Hobey Baker Award finalist and was named the WCHA Student-Athlete of the Year in 1988.
In his four years at UND, Johnson recorded 191 points (70g/121a) over 153 career games. As a senior, Johnson posted 85 points (34g/51a) for UND.
A 1987 draft pick of the Vancouver Canucks, Johnson played professionally for two seasons in the IHL with the Milwaukee Admirals and the Phoenix Roadrunners.
Additionally, you should check out the St. Cloud State article, "Steve Johnson Joins Coaching Staff at SCSU".
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