Brad Napper is entering his first season as a member of Lenahan's coaching staff, but is no stranger to the Wildcat program.
The Dallas, Texas native is back in Evanston after an exceptional playing career for the Wildcats over the past four years. He ended his career last fall as the only two-time first team All-Big Ten player in program history and was a three-time academic All-Big Ten selection.
Back in January, Napper became the first Northwestern player to be drafted into the MLS, selected by FC Dallas in the second round of the 2006 MLS Supplemental Draft.
"Brad becoming an assistant coach here is a great statement for our program," Lenahan said. "After trying out with FC Dallas, he had other opportunities to play professionally but we are happy he decided to start his non-playing career. Brad is a great example of the type of players we are looking for here at Northwestern. He decided to attend NU when the program had experienced very little success and left as the only two-time first team all-conference player and was the first Northwestern player to be drafted into the MLS. He will bring the same competitive spirit to the sidelines that he brought to the playing field. Brad will provide great connectivity to the current players and alums and also provide a great picture to recruits what a special program Northwestern men's soccer has become."
Napper started 77-of-78 games in which he played over his career, including all 61 games over the last three seasons. He finished his career as the Big Ten's all-time leader in goals scored by a defensive player with 13. Napper capped off his Northwestern career with 29 points (13 goals, three assists) and led the NU defense to 22 shutouts during his tenure.
The all-conference defender had his best statistical season in 2004 when he recorded seven goals and an assist from his defender spot.