George Mason University assistant vice president and director of athletics Bradford Edwards will leave Mason in October to become CEO of NFL Alumni, the National Football League announced on September 13. Edwards will remain at Mason through October 12.
Edwards, who joined Mason as athletics director in 2014, began his post-collegiate career in professional football playing for the Washington Commanders and Atlanta Falcons. Among his many professional football accomplishments, he was a defensive co-captain and runner-up MVP with the Redskins Super Bowl XXVI championship team.
“Brad has been a dynamic athletics director who has moved the department forward on student-athletes’ sports and academic performances, as well as the level of community support Mason can now rely on,” Mason President Gregory Washington said. “NFL Alumni has reclaimed one of its stellar alumni, and we are thrilled for Brad and the NFL.”
While at Mason, Edwards led a departmental effort that secured more than $42 million in revenue contracts and commitments, highlighted by a naming rights deal for EagleBank Arena, a multi-year partnership with Adidas, and a long-term corporate sponsorships agreement with PlayFly Sports.
The Patriots have won 11 conference championships and individually, Mason student-athletes have earned 19 postseason berths in the past seven years in track and field (6), swimming and diving (1), and wrestling (12). After totaling eight Academic All-America honors from 1990-2015 as an athletic department, Patriot student-athletes have combined to garner eight Academic All-America designations during Edwards’ tenure.
Under his watch, 394 student-athletes have achieved the George Mason Provost Scholar Athlete Award, including a record 65 in 2020-21. The award recognizes the student-athletes who have earned at least 38 credit hours and have achieved a cumulative grade point average of 3.75 or better.
“While I am excited to be joining NFL Alumni as their new CEO, I will reflect on my time at George Mason University with fondness,” Edwards said. “I still recall the first time I walked on campus in May of 1990 as a young NFL football player to do offseason training. The growth of Mason since that time has been meteoric. I am extraordinarily grateful for the student-athletes and the many colleagues who I have had the privilege of working alongside. I am also very appreciative to Mason Nation, some of the best fans in the world.”
As CEO of the NFL Alumni, Edwards will lead the oldest and most well-known retired player organization in professional sports. Membership includes thousands of retired players, coaches, front office executives, spouses, cheerleaders, and avid fans.
Washington said he will announce an interim director and a search process prior to Edwards’ October departure.