Matt Johnson will start at quarterback Sept. 4 when the Charlotte 49ers open their first season as a Football Bowl Subdivision member.
Brad Lambert, 49ers cooach, said after practice Monday that Johnson, the starter for most of the team’s first two seasons of college football, had won a three-way battle for the job.
Johnson, who missed the final three-plus games of the 2014 season with a knee injury, was competing with Lee McNeill and Brooks Barden for the job.
“I’ve been real pleased with how all three handled the competition from the spring, through the summer and into the fall,” Lambert said. “Matt has worked extremely hard and has had a really strong camp. He really stepped up and earned the spot.”
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Lambert had said late last week that the quarterbacks’ performances in a scrimmage Friday would probably help the coaching staff make a final decision.
Johnson, a redshirt junior from Maiden, threw for 4,522 yards and ran for 801 yards the past two seasons, when the 49ers competed in the Football Championship Subdivision. After being injured, Johnson was replaced by Lee McNeill, a redshirt junior from Porter Ridge High in Union County.
Lambert said McNeill had entered spring practice as the No. 1 quarterback.
Barden is a freshman from Cartersville, Ga.
Charlotte opens its season in the Georgia Dome against Georgia State. The 49ers’ home opener is Sept. 12 against Presbyterian.