GREENWOOD VILLAGE, Colo. (CBS4) – The only thing more distinct than Marc Johnson whistle is his track record as head baseball coach at Cherry Creek High School — a title he’s proudly, and humbly, held since 1972.
“I think my first year we were 4-10, but never had a losing season since,” Johnson said.
In 47 seasons as the Bruins head coach, Johnson has produced over 400 collegiate players and 51 MLB draft picks, including six first rounders. None of which he will takes any credit for, whatsoever.
“I don’t think it had a lot to do with my coaching, it might have had something to do with my passion for the game. I’ve done my best to make it something the really good athletes want to do,” Johnson said.
Johnson’s been asked to coach at higher levels many times. But the community he’s built over the years, plus a humble attitude has kept him a Creeker for life.
“I’ve had opportunities to leave for college and professional opportunities, but I had someone at home smart enough to tell me, ‘Don’t let your ego get in the way.’ It’s not about my longevity or accomplishments, the game’s about them. It’s about the kids.”
Most recent on Johnson’s list of accomplishments is eclipsing 800 wins. He’s one of only three coaches in Colorado, in any sport, to win 800 games with a single school. By now, it shouldn’t surprise you when I tell you that when win #800 was on the line, Coach J wanted to make sure his players DIDN’T know about it.
“I never mentioned it one time, and I didn’t want to. When the game was over, it was exciting. I knew it was going to happen, it’s a matter of time when you’re as old as I am,” he said.
A lot has changed at Cherry Creek in close to half a century, but Marc Johnson’s success, his remarkable legacy and his whistle have always been a constant.