Feb. 19, 2009
TOKYO – Tim Brown, the seventh Notre Dame winner of the Heisman Trophy in 1987, has joined the coaching staff of the ND Football Legends team that will be coached by Lou Holtz this summer.
The former Los Angeles / Oakland Raiders wide receiver, who was selected to nine Pro Bowls during an illustrious 17-year NFL career, will coach receivers when the alumni team made up of former Fighting Irish football players takes on the Japanese senior national team in the Notre Dame Japan Bowl at the Tokyo Dome on Saturday, July 25.
Head coach Holtz announced Brown’s commitment to the team at a press conference in Tokyo as part of a four-day visit to the Japanese capital to promote the Notre Dame Japan Bowl 2009. The event is endorsed and supported by the Notre Dame Monogram Club and will be the highlight of an eight-day visit to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Japan American Football Association (JAFA).
“I am excited about working with Coach Holtz,” said Brown. “He is the coach who put me on the map and I owe him for a lot of the success I had after I left Notre Dame. He saw something in me that I don’t know I even saw myself and gave me a lot of belief that I could become a better player. This will be a great opportunity to see how he works behind the scenes and to see him working from a coach’s perspective rather than as one of his players.”
Brown knows what to expect from the visit to Tokyo having twice played in Japan, with the Raiders in the 1989 (won 16-13 vs. San Francisco) and 1991 (lost 19-7 vs. Miami) American Bowls. He added: “Those were great times so I’m really looking forward to going out to Japan again.”
Brown joins fellow former Notre Dame players Chris Zorich and Reggie Brooks on the Legends coaching staff. Zorich, a mainstay of the 1988 Notre Dame national championship season, will coach the defensive line, while Brooks, an All-American and 1992 Heisman Trophy candidate will coach the team’s running backs. Former Notre Dame coach Gary Darnell will be the team’s defensive coordinator, Bill Lewis will serve as Assistant Head Coach and will also coach the alumni team’s defensive backs, and Tony Yelovich will coach the offensive line.
For more information on the Notre Dame Japan Bowl 2009 visit www.NDJapanBowl.com.
Fighting Irish Legends Coaching Staff Bios and Quotes:
Gary Darnell was defensive coordinator at Notre Dame under Lou Holtz and has more than 30 years of college coaching experience, including head coaching positions at Tennessee Tech, Western Michigan, and interim positions at Florida and Texas A&M.
The Holtz-Darnell combination guided Notre Dame to two bowl appearances – the 1991 Orange Bowl and 1992 Sugar Bowl – after which, Darnell moved on to University of Texas in 1992. In 1996, Darnell took over at 2-9 Western Michigan University and produced an 8-3 record in his first season, generating the biggest turnaround in the NCAA that year. In his first four seasons at WMU, Darnell compiled a 31-15 record and 24-8 record in the MAC (Mid-American Conference) leading the Broncos to MAC West Division titles and MAC Championship game appearances in 1999 and 2000. Darnell was named MAC coach of the year in 2000.
“The opportunity to coach in this game is exciting for me in many ways,” said Darnell. “Primarily it serves two great institutions – the game of football and the great spirit of Notre Dame football. I look forward to combining those two elements with the camaraderie with the players, fans and the fun associated with the game, and to working with coach Holtz and his staff.”
Bill Lewis served as Assistant Head Coach of Defense and Defensive Backs Coach at Notre Dame from 2005 to 2007. During those three seasons, the Irish made two bowl appearances, the 2005 Fiesta Bowl and 2006 Sugar Bowl.
Lewis began his coaching career in 1963 at East Stroudsburg State, his alma mater, and later became head coach of Wyoming, East Carolina, and Georgia Tech, making 13 bowl appearances. In 1989, he turned around an East Carolina program that had not experienced a winning season since 1983, leading the Pirates to an 11-1 record, victory in the Peach Bowl and a final ranking of ninth in the AP Poll. He spent nine seasons with the NFL’s Miami Dolphins as defense nickel package coach from 1996 to 2004.
“It is a very special honor for me to have been chosen to represent the University of Notre Dame, our alumni, the Notre Dame family around the world, and the Fighting Irish football program in this very exciting game,” said Lewis. “What a privilege it is to be a part of Lou Holtz’s staff for this game and to help coach the Notre Dame Football Legends team.”
Chris Zorich became one of the best linemen to play college football and was an All-American in 1989 and 1990. He returned to his alma mater in 2008 as manager of student welfare and development in the athletic administration department. During his college years, he was an instrumental part of the 1988 Notre Dame National championship team and was inducted into the College Hall of Fame in 2007 being only the third Notre Dame lineman to achieve the honor.
He played six seasons in the NFL after being drafted by the Chicago Bears in 1991. He graduated from law school at the University of Notre Dame in 2002 after earning his Bachelor of Arts degree in American studies in 1991.
“I am extremely honored to be representing the University of Notre Dame in this unique opportunity,” said Zorich. “No other university has the fans or alumni to support a legends game halfway around the world in Japan like Notre Dame has. It is great that the mission of the University is known on a global scale.
Reggie Brooks, a former football All-American running back and Heisman Trophy candidate, is the manager of the University of Notre Dame Monogram and Football Alumni Relations.
A native of Tulsa, Oklahoma, he played Lou Holtz from 1989-92. He remains visible throughout the Notre Dame record book as his career average of 7.6 yards per rush remains a school record and his 1,372 yards rushing in 1992 ranks third-best in single-season school history. The Washington Redskins selected Brooks in the second round of the 1993 NFL draft where he played four seasons finishing with 1,726 career rushing yards including 223 attempts for 1,063 as a rookie in 1993. The Pro Football Writers of America named him to the NFL’s 1993 all-rookie team.
Brooks said: “As a former Notre Dame player, and having participated in the last alumni game in Hamburg, Germany, I am truly honored to have the opportunity to coach in such a prestigious game. The chance to coach alongside Coach Holtz will be a great experience and to do it in a history rich location like Japan only adds to the excitement.”
Tony Yelovich has been with the Notre Dame University organization for more than 20 years and is the assistant athletic director with the responsibility for game management. He moved into an administrative role during the fall of 1994 after serving on the Irish football staff for eight seasons with the three final years as a recruiting coordinator.
Before assuming the recruiting position in the 1991 campaign, he spent five years coaching a variety of positions for the Irish. Yelovich also was an offensive line coach Stanford (1984-85), Tulane (1980-83), and Arizona (1977-79). In 1998 the All-America Football Foundation honored him for his years of service to the game as an assistant coach.
“I am honored and thrilled to be part of this special event,” said Yelovich. “This event brings back many fond memories of my coaching experience at Notre Dame and the young men who played for our teams. I look forward to reuniting with them and my former coaching colleagues.”
Tim Brown totaled 5,024 all-purpose yards at Notre Dame, averaging 116.8 per game, scored 22 touchdown and left as the school’s all-time leader in receiving yards with 2,493. He was chosen as the Heisman Trophy winner in 1987, becoming the first wide receiver to win the award.
The Los Angeles Raiders selected Brown in the first round (sixth overall) of the 1988 NFL Draft and as a rookie he led the league in kickoff returns. He also caught 43 passes for 725 yards, a 16.9 average, and 5 touchdowns. After 16 seasons with the Raiders and one with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Brown retired with 14,934 receiving yards, the second highest total in NFL history, 1094 receptions (3rd), and 100 touchdown catches (3rd-tied). Brown also gained a total of 19,682 combined net yards, ranking him fifth all-time in the NFL at the time of his retirement.
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V.I.P. AMBASSADORS JOE MONTANA AND MIKE GOLIC TO VISIT TOKYO WITH NOTRE DAME FOOTBALL LEGENDS
Former Fighting Irish Stars Will Accompany Alumni Team To Notre Dame Japan Bowl
TOKYO – Joe Montana and Mike Golic will travel to Tokyo this summer as VIP Ambassadors for the Notre Dame Football Legends team that will take part in the Notre Dame Japan Bowl.
Neither Pro Football Hall of Fame quarterback Montana or nine-year NFL veteran Golic will line up on the field for the alumni team against the Japanese senior national team. Both former Notre Dame football stars will arrive during the week of the event, which will take place from July 20 to 26 to celebrate the 75th Anniversary of the Japan American Football Association (JAFA).
Iconic former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Montana and popular ESPN Radio host Golic will lend their support to the ND Football Legends while attending practices, official engagements and media and fan sessions during the build up to the game on Saturday, July 25 in the 55,000-seat Tokyo Dome.
ND Football Legends head coach Lou Holtz announced the pair’s commitment to the team at a press conference in Tokyo as part of a four-day visit to the Japanese capital to promote the Notre Dame Japan Bowl 2009, which is endorsed and supported by the Notre Dame Monogram Club.
“I am very excited about returning to Japan and representing the University of Notre Dame as a VIP Ambassador to the Notre Dame Japan Bowl,” said Montana, who has twice played in the Tokyo Dome for the 49ers in 1989 and the Kansas City Chiefs in 1994 in American Bowl preseason action.
“I have visited Japan on many occasions including during my playing days. It has always been a wonderful experience due to the beauty of the country and the hospitality of the people.”
Golic, who served as captain of the Fighting Irish during his senior season, said: “I am proud to represent the university any way I can, so long as I don’t have to play in the game, because I will hurt myself! I am very excited to be an ambassador for Notre Dame at this game. This event shows again why Notre Dame is beloved world wide.”
Montana became the starting quarterback in 1977 and started throughout his senior year in 1978 at Notre Dame and famously rallied the Irish from a 22-point fourth quarter deficit in the 1979 Cotton Bowl to lead Notre Dame to a 35-34 victory. He completed seven of his eight final pass attempts, the last one for a touchdown with two seconds remaining.
Selected in the third round of the NFL Draft by San Francisco, he went on to complete 3,409 passes for 40,551 yards, 273 touchdowns and a 92.3 passer rating. He is the only player to win three Super Bowl MVP awards, and he started and won four Super Bowls, and was named to eight Pro Bowls.
Golic was a Notre Dame captain in 1984, having been named defensive MVP and received an Associated Press All-American honorable mention in 1983. He was a two-year starter at outside linebacker in 1983 and 1984 and also had 25-2 record as a heavyweight wrestler at Notre Dame in 1983
He played 115 games as a defensive tackle for the Houston Oilers, Philadelphia Eagles and Miami Dolphins during a nine-year NFL career, making 11.5 sacks and three interceptions.
Golic is the co-host of the popular “Mike & Mike in the Morning” show, which is carried by more than 310 affiliates nationwide. He also serves as an analyst for ESPN and ESPN2’s NFL studio programming.
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