MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — WVU football coach Neal Brown’s last action as a competitive football player took place in West Virginia.

Brown shared the story during a Friday appearance on MetroNews Talkline.

After graduating from the University of Massachusetts in December 2002 , Brown had a job but was also playing for the Lexington Horsemen, an arena league team that played its games in Rupp Arena. He said he was getting ready to play an away game in Wheeling when he got a call from UMASS coach Mark Whipple.

“I had a job but I was playing on this arena league team, really just trying to postpone the real world as long as possible, honestly, just trying to figure it out. I graduated with a business degree and Coach Whipple had called and they had a GA (graduate assistant) job open,” Brown said.

He said within the first month back at UMASS the coaching bug kicked in.

Brown talked Friday about his maturation as a coach. He said the older he gets and the older his own children get the more he understands football is just a tool that he has been blessed with to development young people.

“I think that’s where my strongest passion is at this point in my life,” he said. “I think it’s our duty as coaches and in the athletic department not only to graduate players but really set them up for what’s next, professionally.”

Brown spent part of Friday morning visiting by Morgantown and University high schools.

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