| Overall UK Wins: 24 | Overall UK Losses: 8 | Win % 75 |
Date of Birth: February 7, 1929
Date of Death: May 25, 2021
Hometown: Jackson, TN
Alma Mater: Tennessee
For a generalized listing of officials, please consult this page.
|12/1/1960||Virginia Military at Kentucky||W||72 - 56||16||16||24||25||0||1||-||Max Macon and Harold Johnson|
|12/3/1960||Florida State at Kentucky||L||58 - 63||18||17||24||25||1||0||-||Max Macon and Harold Johnson|
|2/4/1961||Florida at Kentucky||W||89 - 68||17||14||21||21||1||0||-||Julius Sneed and Harold Johnson|
|1/6/1962||Georgia Tech at Kentucky||W||89 - 70||20||20||26||24||0||2||Tech's John Herbert for telling official "Ref, you're crazy". [Called by A.C. Lambert]||Harold Johnson and A.C. Lambert|
|1/8/1962||Kentucky at Vanderbilt||W||77 - 68||16||22||34||23||0||0||-||A.C. Lambert and Harold Johnson|
|1/11/1963||Kentucky at Louisiana State||W||63 - 56||17||17||21||16||0||1||-||Julius Sneed and Harold Johnson|
|1/12/1963||Kentucky at Tulane||W||81 - 72||17||19||23||25||1||1||-||Claude Tanksley and Harold Johnson|
|2/23/1963||Auburn at Kentucky||W||78 - 59||12||14||17||15||1||0||-||Tobey Pace and Harold Johnson|
|2/25/1963||Alabama at Kentucky||W||80 - 63||15||19||23||17||0||1||-||Harold Johnson and Tobey Pace|
|12/30/1963||Kentucky vs. Loyola (LA)||W||86 - 64||20||18||18||24||0||1||-||A.C. Lambert and Harold Johnson|
|1/6/1964||Kentucky at Vanderbilt||L||83 - 85||21||21||32||28||0||0||-||A.C. Lambert and Harold Johnson|
|2/17/1964||Vanderbilt at Kentucky||W||104 - 73||25||21||24||33||1||0||Ted Deeken for not raising his hand after a personal was called [called by Harold Johnson]||A.C. Lambert and Harold Johnson|
|1/18/1965||Auburn at Kentucky||W||73 - 67||15||20||21||18||0||1||-||Lou Bello and Harold Johnson|
|2/14/1966||Kentucky at Alabama||W||90 - 67||18||16||20||21||0||0||-||Lou Bello and Harold Johnson|
|12/17/1966||Florida at Kentucky||L||75 - 78||20||20||26||28||1||1||-||Frank Cochran and Harold Johnson|
|12/31/1966||Kentucky vs. Notre Dame||W||96 - 85||25||14||19||38||2||0||Johnny Dee (2) for getting off bench and arguing with referee returning to locker-room during halftime [Both called by Harold Johnson]||Harold Johnson and George Strauthers|
|2/11/1967||Mississippi State at Kentucky||L||72 - 77 OT||25||15||18||36||3||1||-||Bill Henderson and Harold Johnson|
|2/27/1967||Kentucky at Auburn||L||49 - 60||18||14||20||22||0||1||-||W.F. McCarthy and Harold Johnson|
|1/20/1968||Kentucky at Auburn||L||73 - 74||23||22||31||30||0||2||-||A.C. Lambert and Harold Johnson|
|1/27/1968||Kentucky at Louisiana State||W||121 - 95||21||18||22||24||0||0||-||Ralph Stout and Harold Johnson|
|2/3/1968||Louisiana State at Kentucky||W||109 - 96||21||17||24||31||0||1||LSU Coach Press Maravich (2)||Harold Johnson and Bob Mason|
|2/26/1968||Auburn at Kentucky||W||89 - 57||23||22||31||28||1||1||-||Ralph Stout and Harold Johnson|
|3/2/1968||Vanderbilt at Kentucky||W||85 - 80||20||16||24||26||0||0||-||Reggie Copeland and Harold Johnson|
|12/7/1968||North Carolina at Kentucky||L||77 - 87||16||14||17||22||0||0||-||Harold Johnson and Otis Allmond|
|12/14/1968||Kentucky at Pennsylvania||W||102 - 78||23||25||33||25||0||2||-||Harold Johnson and Michael DiTomasso|
|2/1/1969||Vanderbilt at Kentucky||W||103 - 89||21||18||23||27||1||0||-||Harold Johnson and Charlie Bloodworth|
|2/3/1969||Auburn at Kentucky||W||105 - 93||26||19||25||33||1||1||-||A.C. Lambert and Harold Johnson|
|2/10/1969||Mississippi State at Kentucky||W||91 - 69||15||19||30||20||0||1||-||Harold Johnson and Dick Pace|
|2/15/1969||Kentucky at Florida||L||81 - 82||20||18||21||22||0||0||-||Harold Johnson and Dave Scobey|
|3/3/1969||Kentucky at Auburn||W||90 - 86||20||15||13||24||1||1||-||A.C. Lambert and Harold Johnson|
|1/25/1971||Kentucky at Alabama||W||86 - 73||22||23||34||23||2||2||-||Robert Hartsfield and Harold Johnson|
|1/30/1971||Vanderbilt at Kentucky||W||102 - 92||22||19||23||33||1||1||-||Harold Johnson and Joe Caldwell|
Biography - Dignity Memorial (George A. Smith & Sons Funeral Home)
Harold Franklin Johnson was born on February 7, 1929, the son of Rueben Robert Johnson and Thelma Moore Johnson, both deceased, and the younger brother of Robert Cedric Johnson, also deceased. The family resided at 389 South Royal Street in Jackson, TN., a section of town known as "Irish Town," where railroad workers of Scotch-Irish descent settled in after WWI.
Harold is survived by his wife of 68 years, Patricia Lee (Patsy) Lanier Johnson; his four daughters, Archie Ann Taylor (Bruce); Leigh Milam and her children, Jennifer Milam Lankford (Brent) and William Johnson "Bill" Milam (Roberta); Judy Baskin (Mike) and son, Bryson Baskin; Carol Pearson (Jeff) and their children, Hank, Arch, and Perry Pearson; niece Irma Katherine "Kitty" Willis; nephew, Burt Johnson; two great grandchildren, William Walton "Walt" Milam and Catherine Hall Lankford; and step-grandson, Stephen Milam (Jacy) and their children, Story and Shep.
Harold attended Jackson High School, where he played football under Coaches Tury Oman and Fred Delay, both State of Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame Coaches, and basketball under Tury Oman. Harold earned honors as an All Southern and All State Guard in football and All State Basketball and was highly recruited by football legends, Paul "Bear" Bryant, Wallace Wade, Red Sanders, Frank Howard, Allyn McKeen and Harry Mehre, and by the legendary basketball coach, Adolph Rupp. He chose to play football under General Robert Reese "Bob" Neyland at the University of Tennessee (UT).
At UT, Harold lettered as a sophomore at guard and blocking back; however, after his third knee operation in the spring of his junior year, Harold, was no longer able to play these positions. Still considered a valuable member of the team, he served as a member of the kicking team. General Neyland promised Harold a scholarship of five years, rather than the usual four years, to enable Harold to finish law school. General Neyland added Harold to his coaching staff in the fall of 1949, and Harold participated as a player-coach on both the 1949 and 1950 University of Tennessee National Championship Team.
During law school, Harold was introduced to the beautiful Patsy Lanier of Murfreesboro, TN, which led to a marriage of 68 years. (Most of Harold and Patsy's friends refer to Patsy as "Saint Patsy.") Harold and Patsy had four daughters: Ann, who recently retired as a supervisory counsel with the FDIC in Washington, D.C.; Leigh, Clerk and Master of the Chancery Court for Henderson County, TN in Lexington; Judy, a nurse practitioner with the Cardiology Department at the Jackson Clinic in Jackson, TN; and Carol, Deputy General Counsel with TruGreen in Memphis, TN. Harold and Patsy have six grandchildren: Jennifer and Bill Milam; Hank, Arch, and Perry Pearson; and Bryson Baskin; and two great-grandchildren, William Walton "Walt" Milam and Catherine Hall Lankford.
With General Neyland's recommendation, Harold became a Southeastern Conference basketball official at the age of 24. Harold officiated Southeastern Conference Basketball for 20 years, and also officiated in the Missouri Valley and Ohio Valley Conferences. As a Southeastern Conference Basketball official, Harold officiated numerous holiday and NCAA tournaments, including the Kentucky Invitational, the Sugar Bowl Basketball Tournament, the Gator Bowl Basketball Tournament, NCAA division playoffs and the NCAA College Division Finals. At the age of 25, Harold became a member of the Southeastern Conference Football Officials Association as an Umpire. Harold officiated all of the major Bowl games, except the Rose Bowl, for which Southeastern Conference Football Officials were ineligible. He officiated twice in each of the Sugar Bowl, Cotton Bowl, and Orange Bowl games; the Gator Bowl three times; and the Liberty Bowl, Blue Bonnet Bowl, the Sun Bowl, and the Senior Bowl. In his last game of the Senior Bowl in 1990, Harold officiated all six positions. Harold then served as an Observer/Supervisor of the Football Officiating for three years.
Harold, with his best friend, A.C. "Butch" Lambert, officiated both Southeastern Conference Football and Basketball for 30 years and were the only two officials to serve as President of both the Southeastern Conference Football Officials Associating and the Southeastern Conference Basketball Officials Association. When he retired from the SEC in 1990, HaroldŐs career with the SEC had spanned 33 years, longer than the tenure of any other SEC official.
Harold was inducted into the Jackson-Madison County Sports Hall of Fame and the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame, where he served as President and was a Board Member for 20 years.
In 1952, after graduating from the UT School of Law, Harold became a member of the Tennessee Bar Association, and began his practice associated with Roger Murray, Sr. and later with both Roger Murray, Sr. and Roger Murray, Jr., in the law firm of Murray, Murray, and Johnson. Harold was engaged in the general practice of law in both the State and Federal Courts until his death in 2021. Harold served as Assistant City Attorney for the City of Jackson and as City Attorney for 19 years under the tenures of Mayor Bob Conger and Commissioners R.E. "Tobe" Bailey, Ben Langford, and Johnny Parham.
Harold enjoyed traveling throughout the United States. In 1984, Harold officiated a football game in Los Angeles, CA, between the University of Southern California and Louisiana State University football . Harold and Patsy decided to drive to California and explore the other side of the Mississippi River. This began the coupleŐs annual driving tour of the United States and Canada that continued until 2020.
At age 90, while attending a retirement party for a fellow attorney, Harold was asked when he planned to retire. He announced to his colleagues that his retirement party would be held at George A. Smith and Sons Funeral Home.
Harold's "retirement party" will consist of a period of visitation from 10 a.m. - 11:45 a.m. on Saturday, May 29, 2021 at the North Chapel of George A. Smith and Sons Funeral Home, followed by a graveside service at Ridgecrest Cemetery.
The following individuals will serve as Honorary Pallbearers, Jerry Ward, Dr. Kippy Miller, Chancellor James F. Butler, Michael Tabor, Frank Robins, and Mary Jo Middlebrooks.
The service will be officiated by Rev. Paul Clayton.
The family will honor HaroldŐs request that the "Tennessee Alma Mater" be played at his funeral service.