The American Football Coaches Association announced today that West Virginia University head coach Neal Brown has been named honorary head coach of 2020 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team for his leadership in the Morgantown community and his commitment to education, developing future leaders and giving back.
Brown is the first member of the WVU program to earn AFCA Good Works Team distinction since former wide receiver Tito Gonzales was named in 2008. The fifth overall Mountaineer named to the team, he, along with Gonzales, are joined by former center Eric de Groh (1995), defensive back David Mayfield (1994) and defensive end Mike Booth (1993).
Brown is frequently seen visiting WVU Medicine Children’s throughout the year, trying to brighten the day of many of the children and their families and is involved in numerous fundraising events for WVU Medicine. Being from a family of educators, he also has championed efforts around the state on behalf of education and the importance of reading.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Brown worked with WVU Medicine and University officials and received help from his coaches, staff and players, in spreading the word on the importance of wearing a mask and staying socially distant and joining together as a community in an attempt to lessen the effects of the disease.
Since Brown’s arrival in 2019, the importance of community service and responsibility of being loyal to the state and Mountaineer Nation has been a constant with the WVU football program. He has implemented several student-athlete initiatives this year, to not only educate the players, but provide platforms and avenues for them to further their individual brand and their abilities outside of football.
One of his main initiatives was when he officially introduced a development plan for the student-athletes called the “Fifth Quarter” program to serve and develop total Mountaineers. It is an integral part of the student-athlete experience to position the players for success on the playing field and for life beyond graduation.
Additional information on the 2020 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team is included below.
As a time-honored tradition for the past 29 years, Allstate and the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) are recognizing 22 student-athletes and an honorary coach named to the 2020 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® for stepping up to help those in need. Annually, Allstate partners with the AFCA to spotlight student-athletes whose remarkable stories often go unnoticed.
“With so many unexpected challenges this year, it’s inspiring to see this group of talented athletes use their voices and actions to make a difference in their communities,” said Pam Hollander, vice president of consumer marketing for Allstate. “Allstate believes that celebrating positive change creates vibrant and resilient communities and recognizing acts of kindness these players demonstrate is a vital part of our protection of college football and its traditions.”
Whether founding a nonprofit to combat poverty, providing food to families hit hardest by COVID-19, working with youth on important social issues like bullying or organizing their teammates to take a stand against racial injustice, the class of 2020 is led by a new wave of college football stars helping their communities.
“I’m excited to team up with Allstate and AFCA to recognize the powerful stories of these players and the incredible work they are doing,” said Tim Tebow, two-time national champion and former Allstate AFCA Good Works Team member. “It’s truly an honor to call myself an alumnus of the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team and continue to highlight the amazing work these student-athletes do off-the-field.”