In this week’s edition of Where Are They Now Wednesday, we catch up with Mountaineer QB, Chad Johnston. Johnston played for the Mountaineers from 1993-1996. He finished his career at WVU with 43 touchdowns, and 5,954 yards passing.
Johnston was able to play under the great Don Nehlen and was also a part of the legendary 1993 undefeated team led by a rotation of three QB’s: Darren Studstill, Jake Kelchner, and Johnston.
“You don’t realize how it is to have a loyal coach like that [Nehlen] until he is gone,” Johnston said, “and that’s what Blacksburg is going through right now with [Frank] Beamer.”
Johnston getting to play under Nehlen’s coaching, knows how a good coach can help a team. Johnston said of Dana Holgorsen that he was excited, at first, when the announcement came through that he would be the Mountaineers new coach. “But after the first few seasons you start to wonder. But firing him right now would be a step backwards if we were to lose him.”
Next season, WVU defensive coordinator Tony Gibson will be tasked with replacing eight of eleven starters on defense. Johnston practiced against Mountaineer defenses as a member of the Big East. He knows WVU faces a tougher task against the higher octane Big 12 teams.
“We need to close the talent gap,” said Johnston. “Starters were okay, but depth is where we lacked.”
After watching Skyler Howard at QB last season, Johnston has one word of advice for the Mountaineer signal caller: “Believe what you see, that’s the biggest thing.”
Where is Chad Johnston now? He is a dermatologist with his own practice. His main location is in Blacksburg, VA. He has two other offices in Roanoke and Narrows. Johnston is also in his 4th season as the head football coach for Blacksburg High School. He has made the playoffs the past two seasons.