Boogie Johnson - Women's Track & Field - Arkansas Razorbacks

Boogie Johnson

Lawrence Johnson | Coaching honors

  • 2019 USATF National Coach of the Year
  • 2013 USATF National Coach of the Year
  • 2012 USTFCCCA Indoor Southeast Region Women’s Coach of the Year
  • 2012 USTFCCCA Outdoor Southeast Region Women’s Coach of the Year
  • 2011 USTFCCCA Indoor Southeast Region Women’s Coach of the Year
  • 2011 USTFCCCA Outdoor Southeast Region Women’s Coach of the Year
  • 2010 USTFCCCA Indoor Southeast Region Women’s Coach of the Year
  • 2010 USTFCCCA Outdoor Southeast Region Women’s Coach of the Year
  • 2008 USTFCCCA Outdoor Southeast Region Women’s Assistant Coach of the Year

Lawrence “Boogie” Johnson joined the Razorback women’s track and field program as an assistant coach in the summer of 2023 as his brother, Chris Johnson, began his first season as Arkansas women’s head coach.

The 48-year-old Lawrence, an older brother of Chris (46), has twice been selected as United States of America Track & Field National Coach of the Year, first in 2013 and again in 2019.

Among the greatest sprint and hurdle coaches in the world, Boogie Johnson has guided the careers of numerous Olympians who have become Olympic, World, and national champions while their efforts have included several records. He is the owner and head coach of Hurdle Mechanic, one of the top professional training groups.

In the 2019 season, Dalilah Muhammad set a world record in the 400m hurdles at the USATF Championships and then improved her world record in winning the World Championship title in Doha. During 2013, Johnson coached Briana Rollins McNeal to an American record in the 100m hurdles as well as a gold medal in the 2013 World Championships held in Russia.

Boogie Johnson coached three medalists in the 2016 Rio Olympics with McNeal and Muhammad claiming gold in the 100m hurdle and 400m hurdle races, respectively, while Kristi Castlin added a bronze medal in the 100m hurdles.

In the 2021 Tokyo Olympics, Muhammad collected a gold medal on the United States 4 x 400m relay and silver medal in the 400m hurdles. In the 2022 World Championships staged in Eugene, Oregon, Muhammad finished as the bronze medalist in the 400m hurdles.

At the 2023 World Championships in Budapest, Hungary, Anna Cockrell set a career best in placing fifth in the 400m hurdle final.

Serving on the coaching staff for Team USA in international competitions, Johnson was a member of USATF’s 2014 World Indoor Championship staff as well as the 2015 World Relay Championships.

Previous collegiate coaching experience for Johnson includes five years as Clemson’s Director of Track and Field from 2008 to 2013. He served as an assistant for four years with the Virginia Tech program, which included him being the Associate Head Women’s Coach for the 2007-08 season.

Johnson spent two years at Southern Illinois, working with the women’s sprinter, hurdlers, and jumpers initially, then added the men’s group in those event areas in the fall of 2004.

After coaching at Clemson, Johnson joined the Cal State Northridge program as an assistant coach prior to the 2015 season and then was named interim head coach of the men’s and women’s programs in July of 2017 through the 2019 season.

In total, Johnson coached five NCAA champions, nearly 100 All-Americans and over 80 conference champions among 16 conference team titles over the span of his collegiate coaching career.

Additional coaching honors for Johnson through USTFCCCA include six accolades as Southeast Region Women’s Coach of the Year with three honors apiece for the indoor and outdoor seasons covering 2010 to 2012.

As a graduate assistant with the Arkansas women’s program, Johnson also assisted with the instruction of sprints, hurdles, and jumps from 1999-2002 when the Razorbacks claimed consecutive SEC triple crowns during that time frame.

Johnson earned a Bachelor of Applied Science in Kinesiology and Exercise Science from Arkansas in 2000 while a sprinter with the Razorback track and field program under head coach John McDonnell. During his time with the program, Johnson competed on four SWC championship teams as well as the 1998 NCAA Outdoor Championship squad.

Prior to competing at Arkansas, Johnson was a member of the National Championship triple crown program at Blinn College in Brenham, Texas, in 1994-95. In 1996, Johnson won the South Coast Conference 400m title at Long Beach City College.

Johnson is married to the former Lilly Montgomery, a member of the Arkansas marching band from 1994-96, who earned undergraduate and master’s degrees from the University of Arkansas. The couple have four children, Desirae (29), Lawrence (23), Laniah (19), and Lukas (18).