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By Dan Ryan
BCU Athletics Senior Writer-Historian

Terry Bradden Jr. never expected that another week in the office would include coming up with a scheme to stop Tom Brady in preparation for a second straight Super Bowl appearance.

"Not a billion years," said the former Bethune-Cookman University Graduate Assistant now the Defensive Quality Control Coach for the defending Super Bowl Champion Kansas City Chiefs. "But this isn't another week, it's for all the apples so we have to be focused at the task at hand and make sure all the pieces are in the right place."bcu terry bradden202Bradden

Bradden Jr. made his comments during his media availability – let's just say it again because it's really cool – his media availability in preparation for Sunday's upcoming Super Bowl against the Tampa Bay Bucs and that quarterback GOAT they have. All due respect to Patrick Mahomes, of course.

(Just for kicks. How do you scheme Brady? Bradden Jr. lapsed into coach speak. It was beautiful. "To beat him, you have to play fundamentally sound football and turn everything you did in practice in game reality.")

"I appreciate every opportunity," Bradden Jr. said. "I know this is a once in a lifetime thing. Some coaches have been doing 40-60 years and never get to be in a Super Bowl. I look it as a blessing."

A blessing, even in the midst of a COVID wracked season that saw everyone wearing a mask, a daily test, contact tracing and six-foot social distancing being everything but a law. From a football standpoint, the Chiefs were pretty much the same squad that beat the San Francisco 49ers last year.

"We knew what it takes to get there," Bradden Jr. said.

This is Bradden Jr.'s fourth year with the Chiefs after his stint at Bethune-Cookman and he is grateful for the mentorship of veteran coach Andy Reid.

"I learn from him every day," Bradden Jr. said. "His work ethic, showing up every day consistently … he's the same game each day. He treats his staff and players as men, and because of that, he can teach me and guide me. He's a special dude."

Bradden Jr. still is thankful for his HBCU roots, including playing days at Howard and Tuskegee. Working at B-CU led to his job with the Chiefs. There's also the pride of representing.

"My HBCU experience means everything," Bradden Jr. said. "Without [Terry Sims] and [Lynn W. Thompson], I would never have this opportunity. God has been good to me. Bethune-Cookman is all based on religion. It was a blessing to coach there because it made me the coach that I am today. Coach Sims and his phenomenal program has made it that I can walk through any door, put my head down and go to work. HBCUs are my heart. Anytime I have a chance to wear any HBCU shirt, I'm wearing it because it's a blessing to come from those prestigious universities."

Bradden Jr. will be wearing a Chiefs' coach's polo Sunday at 6:45 p.m.

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