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Mike Brown - future Premiership sporting director?

By Chris Jones

Trending on RugbyPass

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Former England full back Mike Brown, who launches his new Premiership career with Newcastle Falcons on Sunday against former club Harlequins, is starting a university course to become a rugby sporting director when he quits playing.

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Brown has visited Norwich City’s training ground, to meet their Sporting Director, Stuart Webber and is taking a two year Masters In Sporting Directorship course at Manchester Metropolitan university designed to give him the skills to fill that kind of role in rugby union.

Brown, who helped Quins win the title in his final season with the club, told RugbyPass: “ I am a reserved sort of person and this new focus means I am not thinking about rugby 24/7 – it refreshes you.

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Matt Dawson and Mike Brown share rugby memories

“Rugby success is like a drug and you become addicted to it and also proving people wrong. Last couple of years I haven’t felt the need to do that with the focus on my family, but I still love playing on the weekend and it allows me to be someone different on the field.”

Linking up again with Dean Richards, the former Quins director of rugby who has that role at Newcastle, made the pain of having to leave the Twickenham Stoop easier to deal with after 17 years.

Brown added: “I have gone all northern, joining Newcastle and doing the course in Manchester which involves going there two days every six weeks and it is structured for people who have other things going on. They give you a mentor which eases my apprehensions about going back into the academic side. I am really excited about the course and mentioned it to Dean and he is really supportive.

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“Moving to Newcastle gives me access to Dean, one of the best in the director of rugby role, and I want to reach out to as many people as possible with experience.”

The full back, who won 72 England caps, believes it is time for rugby to follow suit and embrace the role of sporting director and has visited Southampton to speak to Matt Crocker the club’s Director of Football Operations.

Brown said: “I have been thinking about what I want to do after rugby and with the experience I have it would be as shame if I couldn’t give back to sport. I have no interest in being a coach whatsoever – it doesn’t float my boat. I started researching different roles and sporting director is basically what Billy Millard came in to do at Quins.

“He manages the performance side and recruitment of staff in all different areas. I found out that Billy was doing the same (university course) and I applied to Manchester.

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“I haven’t done anything academic since my A levels and the course I will be doing is structured for people like myself who are either in sport, recently retired or just want to get better in what they do. am trying to put my mind-set with my rugby into this which is dedicating myself, speaking to the best and becoming the best at some point.”

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Mike Brown - future Premiership sporting director?

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