Sports Hall of Fame 2017: Pat Johnston

| Sunday, May 21, 2017, TRIB-LIVE

If you look up “Coach” in the dictionary, you just may see a picture of Pat Johnston.

The longtime Fox Chapel football and wrestling assistant coach will be inducted into the Fox Chapel Sports Hall of Fame next Month.

“I was very much surprised, and I am very humbled by the nomination and selection to the Hall of Fame,” he said, “especially when you hear of all the great accomplishments of all the student-athletes and coaches. In my almost 70 seasons, I really have many memories that I cherish. Most all of them involve athletes who developed a belief in themselves and worked very hard to achieve goals. Sometimes, they were small gains in the field events and the weight room but many games, matches and meets were won by great demonstrations of heart.”

The 1967 graduate of Avalon High School had quite an impressive resume playing and coaching sports.

He played football and basketball and ran track at Avalon and was a three-year starter in football and lettered two years in basketball. He was selected to the All-WPIAL Class B football team as a senior and was also the Ohio Valley Conference MVP.

He attended Westminster College and started on the offensive line all four years. He made the NAIA all-district team as a junior and senior and received honorable mention on the Associated Press All-American team as a senior. The Titans claimed the NAIA national championship that year.

He is in the Westminster College Hall of Fame and was selected to the Titans’ all-time football team.

His coaching career started at Fox Chapel in 1971 as an assistant varsity coach under Len Walkowiak, and he coached both junior high and varsity under Frank Rocco before becoming Frank Morelli’s defensive coordinator. He also was a varsity coach for three years.

During his 20 years, he coached many of the football players who are in the Fox Chapel Sports Hall of Fame. He also was an assistant wrestling coach for 10 years and a junior high track coach for two years. Johnston is retired and lives in Seminole, Fla.

“My involvement in sports is done, and I pretty much just watch sports on TV,” he said. “I still follow Fox Chapel sports on the internet. After all the years of coaching, I am done. I still keep in touch with a lot of the coaches, and I hope to see a lot of friends at the banquet.”