Twenty five years ago, Natrone Means was a star running back at North Carolina. He went on to have a solid NFL career, highlighted by an All-Pro season with the San Diego Chargers in 1994.
After Means finished his career with a short stint with the Carolina Panthers in 2000, Means wasn’t quite sure what was next for him. He put off coaching for a while despite others pushing him to do it, but eventually decided he wanted to give it a try, first serving as an assistant at Livingstone College and then as offensive coordinator for West Charlotte.
When Kienus Boulware was named Winston-Salem State’s head coach in 2014, Means let his former UNC teammate know that he was interested in coaching, and he eventually joined as running backs coach and run game coordinator Means rushed for 3,074 rushing yards at three seasons in Chapel Hill, so he knows what success looks like at the college level. He’s got an embarrassment of riches in the backfield, as Te’Vaughn Hurse and Kerrion Moore combined to rush for better than 190 yards per game while helping WSSU go 9-3, winning the back-to-back CIAA titles and returning to the D2 playoffs for the first time since 2013.
“We’ve accumulated a talented group of running backs who really like each other, who really like to compete and who feel very strongly about our impact on the game,” Means told HBCU Gameday. “It’s almost like I have a 1A and a 1B.”