Brown Names Three To Administrative Positions At WVU
MORGANTOWN, W.Va.–Neal Brown is starting to fill his staff at West Virginia.
Wednesday he announced three additions to his administrative staff. Each previously worked with Brown at Troy.
Mark Perry will be the director of football administration, while Brian Bennett will serve as the director of player personnel and Patrick Johnston will be the director of football operations.
“These guys did an outstanding job on our staff at Troy, and I am excited to have them join the West Virginia football staff,” Brown said. “From an administrative viewpoint, they have a lot of great ideas that will help build the program brand, assist with cultivating a family atmosphere and make the student-athlete experience more enjoyable.”
All three come to WVU with Brown after working in similar functions at Troy; Perry served as the director of football operations, Bennett as the director of player personnel and Johnston as the on-campus recruiting director and assistant director of operations.
At West Virginia, Perry will oversee all off-field related activities, along with the support staff and office administration. He will administer the budget, including planning, purchases, monitoring expenditures, monthly reviews, travel expenditures and equipment purchasing.
Perry also will assist Brown with on-campus communication and networking, all issues related to rules compliance, strategic and tactical planning, game day planning and camps and clinics. He will assist with all staff evaluations and oversee player relations, operations, strength and conditioning, athletic training, academics, and video. Additionally, Perry will serve as a liaison between the football staff and the Big 12 Conference as it relates to game officials and rules interpretations.
Prior to Troy, Perry coached 17 years at the college and high school levels. He had a successful head coaching stint at Lexington Catholic High School in Lexington, Kentucky. In his four seasons, he was named district coach of the year on three occasions and the Kentucky Football Coaches Association 3A Coach of the Year in 2016.
Perry led the Knights to the Kentucky 3A semifinals in his first season at Lexington Catholic in 2014 and followed that with a state championship game appearance in 2015. Additionally, Lexington Catholic advanced to the regional finals in his final two seasons.
His time at Lexington Catholic capped a 14-year head coaching career in the state of Kentucky in which he earned nine district coach of the year awards. Prior to his tenure at Lexington Catholic, Perry coached at Central Hardin High School (2011-13) and Washington County High School (2004-10).
Before entering the high school ranks, Perry spent a year and a half at Baylor (2003-04) where he served as the assistant director of operations, assistant strength coach and as a defensive graduate assistant. He began his coaching career at his alma mater, Kentucky, as a student coach and eventually a graduate assistant.
Perry played quarterback at Kentucky from 1997-00 under head coach Hal Mumme and assistants Mike Leach and Tony Franklin. He graduated from Kentucky with a bachelor’s degree in kinesiology and health promotion in 2001 and received his master’s degree in educational leadership studies from Kentucky in 2007.
Perry is married to the former Elizabeth Mitchell of Prospect, Kentucky, and the couple has three children, Beau, Mary-Claire and Brooks.
At WVU, Bennett will oversee all recruiting operations. He will oversee multiple recruiting coordinators, maintain recruiting databases and calendar in addition to managing the organizational aspects of recruiting. He will manage all recruiting evaluations and be the liaison to Brown on all recruiting issues.
Bennett will organize recruiting areas and make staff assignments, oversee recruiting meetings, correspondence and official and unofficial visits. He will maintain the status of scholarship offers, recruiting targets, commitments and update the staff on recruiting issues. As a liaison with the University admissions office, he will work with prospects and high schools to facilitate the admissions process.
At Troy, Bennett was the director of player personnel for four years under Brown. The Trojans’ recruiting classes were the best in program history. Every class was ranked among the top in the Sun Belt Conference rankings by different publications. rivals ranked the 2017 class as the best by average signee rating in the Sun Belt.
Bennett joined the Troy staff following one season as a defensive quality control coach at Texas. He worked with the Longhorn defensive line in addition to helping with the coaching staff’s transition from Louisville to Texas.
He spent the previous four seasons at Louisville as a graduate assistant (three years) and student assistant coach on the defensive side of the football for coach Charlie Strong. The Cardinals posted a combined 23-3 record over his final two seasons with victories in the 2012 Sugar Bowl and 2013 Russell Athletic Bowl.
Bennett first joined Strong as a student assistant coach at Florida in 2009 after two years as a student assistant coach at Birmingham Southern. He moved into the coaching ranks after an injury ended his playing career during his freshman season at Birmingham Southern.
The Mobile, Alabama, native had an impressive string of six straight bowl appearances (2009-14) on his resume as a quality control specialist, graduate assistant or student assistant coach.
Bennett earned his bachelor of science degree in psychology from Louisville in 2011 and his master of science degree in sports administration from Louisville in 2013.
Bennett is married to the former Sarah Hall of Danville, Kentucky.
At WVU, Johnston will play a key role in future capital projects. He will work closely with external entities and internal parties surrounding facility improvements and branding. Johnston will lead all planning and scheduling on behalf of the football program, including team travel, game day operations, preseason training camp and in-season practices. Johnston also will serve as a lead bowl game management administrator. He will organize the team leadership council and handle all event management for the football program.
Johnston spent two years as Troy’s director of campus recruiting and assistant director of football operations after he served as Troy’s recruiting analyst during the 2015 and 2016 seasons. Prior to that, he spent one semester working with the Troy equipment department.
The Montgomery, Alabama, native spent five years as the director of member services for Wynlakes Golf and Country Club before coming to Troy in July 2015. Johnston earned his master’s degree from Troy in sport management in 2017.
Johnston is married the former Becca Chavers.