Johnnie Jones Honored Today In Munford
The City of Munford honored former Vol great and hometown hero Johnnie Jones on Thursday, December 13th at 1:30 at The City of Munford Fire Department. The street going back to the football field that Johnnie played on as a youth has been renamed to '33 Johnnie Jones Drive' in his honor. University of Tennessee Coach Johnny Majors in attendance at the dedication, and the community is invited.
“To have a leader in our community with the heart and work ethic of Johnnie is a gift. He is one of the most modest individuals I know, serving our city as a reserve police officer, and giving of his time teaching fundamentals of the game to the young men in the football program at Munford High School. He is a mentor and role model to many. It is my distinct pleasure to see the street renamed in Johnnie’s honor,” stated Munford Mayor Dwayne Cole.
Munford Police Chief Randal Baskin added, “Officer Johnnie Jones is a positive individual is a very positive individual who is eager to do whatever is asked of him. He is an asset to our force.”
While at Munford High School, Jones rushed for 4,547 yards and 47 touchdowns. His senior year, he was named West Tennessee Offensive Player of the Year by the Jackson Sun, a consensus All-State running back and All-South honorable mention, number eight recruit in the state by the Knoxville News Sentinel and the number two running back by the Knoxville Journal. His number is one of only three ever to be retired at Munford High School.
While at the University of Tennessee, Jones had record-breaking performances rushing for 234 yard on 41 attempts in a single game, and was named “Player of the Week” by the Associated Press for his efforts. He also received the Most Valuable Player for his efforts in the 1983 Florida Citrus Bowl. Likely, the most memorable of games in Jones’ career came in the Tennessee versus Alabama game in 1983; where he went on to score the winning touchdown with 112 rushing yards. In 1984, he was a candidate for the Heisman Trophy. Jones was also recognized as a two-time All-SEC player and second-team All American.
During his four years at Tennessee, Jones broke the school’s career rushing record with 2, 852 yards and 19 touchdowns on 517 attempts. He also caught 26 passes for 220 yards and a touchdown, giving him over 3,000 total career yards. To this day, Jones holds the school’s sixth highest single-game record, and stands as the fourth all-time leading rusher. His 41 rushing attempts remains a school record, as does his three games of 200 or more yards rushing. His six consecutive games of 100 or more rushing yards is the second most in school history, and his 13 games of 100 or more yards rushing remains the third highest in school history. Additional accolades include his 2003 naming as “Vol Legend of the Game,” 2013 Tipton County Sports Hall of Fame and 2018 inductee in the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame.
After college, Jones was selected by the Seattle Seahawks in the fifth round of the NFL Draft as the 137th overall pick. After the Seahawks, he signed briefly with the Houston Oilers in 1986 before joining the Hamilton Tiger-Cats of the Canadian Football League in 1987. Recurring injuries forced an early retirement from the game.
Today, Johnnie Jones is a school resource officer for Tipton County Board of Education, a reserve officer for the Munford Police Department, and assistant running back coach at Munford High School. He remains a very involved person in the community, sharing what he learned on the football field with others.