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Johnson to rejoin UM football team

By Emily Adamson, KECI Reporter, eadamson@keci.com
Vince Bagby, Sports Director, vbagby@keci.com
Published On: Mar 11 2013 12:30:07 PM MDT
Updated On: Mar 05 2013 06:39:45 PM MST
MISSOULA, Mont. -

The University of Montana’s Athletic Conduct Team (ACT) has reinstated Jordan Johnson to the football team after hearing his appeal on Monday.

UM Athletic Director Kent Haslam said the ACT met with Johnson and discussed the appeal with him. Then UM President Royce Engstrom approved the reinstatement.

"Once the circumstances change, which they obviously changed on Friday for Jordan, then the student athlete makes an appeal and we want to act as quickly as we possibly can," Haslam said Tuesday. "It was a great discussion with Jordan, and the Athletic Conduct Team felt like reinstatement was the right thing to do."

Haslam said the reinstatement is effective immediately and Johnson can participate in all team activities. Johnson has two years of eligibility.

Head football coach Mick Delaney didn't say much about Johnson's return Tuesday. But did indicate Johnson will have to compete for the job with the other three returning quarterbacks; Shay Smithwick-Hann,Trent McKinney and Brady Gustafson.

"Jordan is a very good athlete and the thing he does, is he brings a leadership quality to the way that he plays and the way that he studies the game," Delaney said. "But you know...we have Shay, Trent and Brady and he knows that things start over as spring starts and it's just going to be a real competitive situation that everybody is looking forward to."

The last time Johnson suited up was December 2011 for the FCS National Semifinal game.

Johnson appealed his suspension from the team over the weekend, after a jury found him not guilty of rape last Friday. He was suspended from the team July 31, 2012 when he was charged with sexual intercourse without consent. The case went to trial February 8, 2013 and Johnson was acquitted of the charge March 1.