The Washington Times - November 28, 2009, 10:44AM

There was an interesting story out of Boston this week with a Maryland connection – and it had nothing to do with the Terps’ opponent this week, Boston College.

Instead, it was the decision by Northeastern to drop its football program.

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Maryland defensive coordinator Don Brown spent four years at the school, rolling up a 27-20 record while the playoffs in the former Division I-AA once. Don’t think of that as a modest accomplishment; only three of the program’s 10 coaches left with even a .400 winning percentage.

“I’ve actually talked to quite a few people on it,” Brown said this week. “I had four good years there. The last two were 10-2 and 8-4, so we had kind of turned the corner. Let’s just say there were a lot of challenges, but it was a unique place.

“We had a good group of kids from in-state and we’d done a good job recruiting Florida. Needless to say, I was really disappointed. I thought of the championship class of 2002 right away. When I got there, they were 2-9, and then we went 4-7 and [5-6] and then we were 10-2. It’s quite a building process. And when your stadium is in someone’s backyard – you can watch a lady hanging her clothes, that always cracked me up – but we had it rocking for a while.”

It just didn’t last. The Huskies didn’t enjoy a winning season in the six years since Brown left for Massachusetts, and the school’s decision to leave the football scene (much as Boston University did a decade or so ago) leaves the CAA scrambling to play as an 11-school league next year before Old Dominion joins the conference in 2011.

For Brown, though, the program’s end brought back some memories – as well as an acknowledgment of who is really hurt the most by the decision.

“Anybody that drops football, it’s just a bad deal because there’s a group of young people that aren’t playing,” Brown said.

Patrick Stevens