Back to school: Brees to assist Purdue bowl prep

Drew Brees will help with the coaching transition at Purdue, serving as an assistant coach for the Boilermakers as they prepare for the Citrus Bowl on Jan. 2.

“I am extremely excited to work with our team over the next few weeks as we prepare for the Citrus Bowl,” Brees said in a statement. “I see it not only as an opportunity to coach and mentor this group of young men, but represent all the former Purdue players that care so much about our program.”

Brees, who was hired as a countable assistant under NCAA guidelines, is permitted to work with student-athletes as well as participate in recruiting activities.

The 43-year-old played 20 seasons for the Chargers and Saints and ranks second in NFL history in career passing yards (80,358) and touchdown passes (571).

“For more than two decades, Drew Brees has shown the world what makes the Boilermakers special,” athletic director Mike Bobinski said. “He was an elite football player, but most of all, Drew is an extraordinary leader. Gaining his insights on the football field and in our coaching offices during this time of transition will be of great value to our student-athletes and staff.”

New Purdue head coach Ryan Walters, the fifth-youngest coach in FBS, has said that Brian Brohm and co-defensive coordinator Mark Hagen will be calling plays in the Jan. 2 Citrus Bowl against No. 17 LSU while Walters watches practices, hires assistants, recruits and starts preparing for next season.

Brohm is the younger brother of former coach Jeff Brohm, who left the Boilermakers last week to take the head coaching job at Louisville.

“When I first heard about Drew coming back to help coach our guys for the bowl game, I was hoping the rumors were true,” Walters said. “Our players have the opportunity to learn from one of the greatest leaders in football history, a valuable experience that they will never forget. Drew taking time out of his busy schedule to coach the bowl game is a perfect example of Purdue football being one big family, and I cannot wait to see him on the sidelines in Orlando.”

Brees played quarterback at Purdue from 1997 to 2000, winning the Maxwell Award while leading the Boilermakers to the Rose Bowl in 2000. He continue to hold numerous passing records at the university, including passing yards, completions and touchdowns.

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