In 1992, Anthony Lynn left his school of Texas Tech to work for the NFL. The kicker was that he had only six class hours left before he earned his degree.
Even though Lynn won two Super Bowl rings during his time as a running back before he started coaching, soon leading to him in charge of the Los Angeles Chargers, he never forgot about missing his college graduation.
On May 12, the 49-year-old Chargers’ coach finally walked to get his diploma. Lynn is now the proud owner of a bachelor’s degree for interdisciplinary studies at UNLV.
This past Friday after working out with rookies and undrafted free agents, Lynn said that football has always been his top priority. Sometimes it was a good thing, other times not so much. But after choosing football over education, he decided it was time to go back and finish what he started.
Friends and Family Encouraged Anthony Lynn to Complete his Studies
During the Charger’s 9-7 record last season, their coach was studying for exams. The past eighteen months for him were spent doing class work while also staying on top of his coaching job.
His 30-page capstone project talked about challenges and pitfalls athletes face when transitioning to post-competitive life. Lynn’s goal was to learn about the mental health of those athletes with head injuries. The coach finally took 30 hours of classes online such as sociology, psychology, and public health.
Reflecting on his studies, Lynn says mental health covered a broader spectrum than he first thought. He says the most significant thing he learned was how aspects such as identity crisis and boredom could lead to other, serious and sometimes fatal sicknesses with athletes who have retired.
The possibility of Lynn’s return to education started in 2014 when his good friend Dave Szott who also left school to coach, finished his degree 15 years after leaving Penn State.
A couple of years passed and he put it off as he searched for a coaching job. With some help from an educational firm that helps in returning to school, he did just that in 2017.
At first, Lynn didn’t plan on participating in the graduation ceremony. However, he soon realized that this could help inspire other athletes and professionals who face similar challenges as he did. Lynn says if he encourages one person then it’s worth it.