Players speak on first interactions with new head football coach Neal Brown on Monday
Published 3:00 am Wednesday, December 3, 2014
Troy Athletic director John Hartwell described it as a “come to Jesus moment.”
At the Monday morning introduction of Troy head football coach Neal Brown, Hartwell was explaining the first meeting that Troy players had with their new coach earlier on in the morning.
It was 7 a.m., a little earlier than most players were used to, especially given the football season had just ended last Saturday. A little groggy, players found their way to the team facilities for their first face-to-face with Brown.
What they were met with was a fired up, no-nonsense head coach.
“He brought a lot of energy in there this morning,” wide receiver KD Edenfield said. “He was ready to work. He brought a lot of excitement to a lot of the players. Getting back on track and just ready to work right away.”
Call it excitement; call it an injection of new life into the program. Whatever it was, the players were feeling it.
So was everyone in the building, for that matter.
Through out his nearly 30 minute address to the media, Brown was genuine and confident.
And his speech was not without its emotional moments.
“Surely, I won’t break down this early,” Brown said as he was introduced by Hartwell.
But a few tears surfaced when Brown thanked his wife and family for their support.
And after his press conference was over, Brown was mobbed. Converged upon by dozens of people clamoring to talk to him.
Players couldn’t stop talking about him either.
“Oh, I’m ready,” defensive end Tyler Roberts said. “I’m ready to play and we’re coming to work every day. We’re starting up tomorrow morning…were ready to get going and really put to work his plan he’s got in store for us this season.”
For a quarterback like Brandon Silvers who has proven his potential in his first season at the helm of the Troy offense, Brown’s offensive knowledge and prowess is something worth buying into.
“He’s all about the players and trying to make us better and trying to get us back on top,” Silvers said. “It’s awesome for the program.”
Edenfield, who is sure to be a regular target of Silvers’ next season under Brown’s prolific pass offense, knew Monday the opportunities that would come with a new offensive regime.
“It’s very exciting,” Edenfield said. “Coach Brown has had a lot of success wherever he’s been and the offense has put up big numbers. I’m excited to be a part of it this coming up year and do great things.”
Whether it was a “come to Jesus moment” or just a sense of optimism for next season, the imprint of Brown on Troy players has already started.
And for a team that was once feared and revered in the Sun Belt Conference, the confidence and assuredness Brown exudes was welcomed by all in attendance Monday.
Shortly after the press conference, Silvers took to Twitter, encapsulating the sentiments of everyone at the press conference.
“3 more years. Excited bout the future.“