Former Herd stars reconnect with Marshall, each other
Published: Wednesday, May 1, 2013
Updated: Wednesday, May 1, 2013 00:05
Spring is not just a time of hope for Marshall University fans, but is also a time when former Thundering Herd players get a chance to reconnect with their roots.
Although it is small, numerous players have represented Marshall in the NFL. Some of these players got a chance to mingle with their Marshall family during the Green and White game.
The New England Patriots drafted Aaron Dobson, former Herd wide receiver, in the second round last week.
“It feels great to just start my life in New England,” Dobson said. “The phone call was crazy. I’ve been dreaming about that call since I was six.”
Following in the footsteps of Randy Moss and Troy Brown is inspiring, Dobson said.
“Two other good receivers from Marshall played for New England,” Dobson said. “I feel like it’s a trend and I’m going to do well.”
With other Marshall players in the NFL, Dobson has a lot of advice to absorb.
“They’ve given me encouraging words — you have to be on top of it everyday,” Dobson said. “It’s not college, it’s my job now. You have to come to play everyday.”
Although the Philadelphia Eagles drafted Vinny Curry, former Marshall defensive end, last year, he continues to have passion for his school and expects to have the same success as his Herd brothers.
“It feels great, you know,” Curry said. “Anybody that knows me knows how I feel about the university. I feel like just being a son of Marshall in the NFL is nothing but success.”
Curry said he expects to see success with the Eagles during the upcoming season.
“I expect us to be a playoff bound team and for us to move forward and win football games,” Curry said.
Mario Harvey has also been hard at work for the Indianapolis Colts and said people underestimating his team is nothing new for him.
“Representing Marshall, you’re the underdog and going in you have something to prove to everybody,” Harvey said. “Last season was great, they had us winning one game and finishing last. We took that personally and we wouldn’t settle for it.»
While Harvey is hoping to get a Super Bowl win this year, two Marshall alumni will be busy defending that title.
Omar Brown and Albert McClellan are part of the reigning champion Baltimore Ravens.
“Once we made that tackle, our whole lives just changed,” McClellan said. “We’re Super Bowl champs no matter what. You can’t take it from us. Right then and there, you knew our lives changed.”
Along side his former college teammate, Brown said he does not forget where he came from and he is proud to represent his Thundering Herd family.
“It feels good because I came here alone, and I left here with a family,” Brown said. “It was great coming from a small school being on the big stage. It was a great feeling.”
McClellan said he knew when Brown joined the team that he would bring a certain dynamic to the Ravens that only a Marshall son would have.
“I knew Omar was gonna come in and fight, that’s what we do here at Marshall,” McClellan said. “We fight — we’re always the underdogs — so we have to fight for everything we have. So, it just brought more fight to the Ravens, and with more fighters on the team, I guess we’re just gonna keep on winning.”
Doug Legursky, Pittsburgh Steelers center, comes back for the spring game every year and shares his experience in transitioning from college to professional ball.
“There’s a lot of challenges; it’s a lot more mental game once you get to the NFL,” Legursky said. “You have to study a whole lot more. You might be the best guy on the college field, but once you get to the pros, you may not be.”
Brown said it is key to know and understand the business, but no to worry about it and just play football like always.
Kaylin Searles can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.