Coach Marc Johnson Continues To Spread Positivity After Half a Century of Coaching

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Nick Rui

Coach Marc Johnson getting the team ready for a game. “Everybody thinks [coaching] is about wins and losses,” Johnson said. “But truthfully, it’s about trying to make a difference in somebody’s life.”

Nick Rui, Features Editor

“There will always be someone who tells you you can’t do something. Your mission is to prove them wrong,” Creek’s baseball head coach Marc Johnson posted one morning on Twitter.

Despite his decorated status as the winningest coach in Colorado high school sports history, an inducted member of the Colorado Sports Hall of Fame, and the countless number of collegiate and MLB athletes he has produced, Johnson still remains an influential source of encouragement for his players, both on and off the field.

“‘Coach J’ is a mentor for me and so many other kids,” senior Kyle Barkley said. “We all know that we can trust him with pretty much anything…He has not only helped me with skills in baseball, but he has taught me how to be a better person in life.”

Johnson came to Creek after serving in the army in 1971. Now, Johnson is one of the longest serving staff in the district, with this year being his 50th.

“When I first started here, [Creek] was a cowboy school; it was in the middle of nowhere,” Johnson said. “ I’ve been through several superintendents, several principals. I’ve been around for quite a while.”

Over his years at Creek, Johnson has taught physical education, coached soccer, and coached baseball. Despite retiring from the former two, Johnson continues to lead the baseball team “for two reasons: because I love kids, and I love baseball.”

“I think what makes Coach Johnson stand out is that he has a genuine love for kids,” associate head coach Mark Goldsberry said.“He is always looking out for their best interest. He’s more concerned with what happens to them going forward in their adult life.”

Johnson tries to build strong and lasting relationships with his players, even after they graduate.

“[Johnson] does the best that he can to find positions for his players at the college level and also at the professional level,” retired associate head coach Mark Kimminau said. “He goes up and beyond to try to help them extend their careers as long as possible.”

However, according to Johnson, building successful baseball careers is far from his job as a coach.

“Everybody thinks [coaching] is about wins and losses but truthfully, it’s about trying to make a difference in somebody’s life,” Johnson said. “It doesn’t matter if the players play in the big leagues or don’t play in the big leagues…[baseball] is a part of a young man’s life, and hopefully I’ve been a positive influence.”

Recently, starting with the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Johnson has expanded his goals to be a positive influence to Twitter, where he tweets a “positive thought for today” every morning on his account (@jbirdcoach).

“Everybody is looking for inspiration and encouraging words, [so] that’s why I went to Twitter,” Johnson said. “Everybody was down and upset with the pandemic [and] I’m just trying to put out some positive thoughts to people to keep [them] going and working.”

Through his inspiring tweets and selfless attitude, Johnson makes sure that his athletes put their best self forward while performing at a strong level.

“Most coaches definitely get caught up in the game and only care about winning, but ‘Coach J’ has always had the priorities to make us better people,” Barkley said.