It was a packed house on Saturday, September 24, 2022 at the Ludington Library in Bryn Mawr, PA when former Philadelphia Eagles running back Brian Westbrook Sr. appeared for a talk and book signing. He has co-written a new children's book titled, "The Mouse Who Played Football" with sports anchor Lesley Van Arsdall and illustrated by Mr. Tom. The book was published by Temple University Press in 2022.
The crowd was a mix of children of all ages as well as adults in their Westbrook and other Eagles gear, eager to talk to Westbrook. Westbrook currently lives in Brooklyn, New York and has 3 children of his own. When Van Arsdall reached out, it was the right point in his life for him to tell a story from a children's point of view. He wanted to write a story for anyone who has ever been told they cannot do something. He told the audience, "Don't listen to people that are always limiting your success." He said your success with anything depends on how hard you are willing to work. He said, "You get what you earn." Westbrook talked about the importance of sacrifice and is grateful that he gets to spend so much time with his family now.
The Mouse Who Played Football, based on Westbrook’s own experiences, is an inspiring story that encourages young readers to believe in themselves and make their unique differences their strengths. Westbrook was also underestimated but ended up playing for the Villanova Wildcats and 9 years in the NFL including 8 years with the Philadelphia Eagles. He played in the Super Bowl and the Pro Bowl, and was inducted into the Eagles Hall of Fame in 2015.
The book is about a small, underestimated mouse who proves everyone wrong by having confidence and showing others that his small size can be his strength. His determination allows him to eventually make the MFL (Mouse Football League).
Westbrook is also looking at leaving a legacy. He discussed how he and many of us like to live in our comfort zones and now he wants to push himself. "A person that is comfortable being uncomfortable is what I am learning to be," he said. Half of the proceeds from the sale of “The Mouse Who Played Football” will be donated to children’s charities. He is also starting a construction program with the Brian Westbrook Foundation for children in Philadelphia to help empower youth. You can learn more about their other philanthropic initiatives here: https://www.bwestbrook.com/philanthropy.
The book is currently available on Amazon, barnesandnoble.com and other places where books are sold.
A couple of "favorites" Brian shared:
Favorite player: Walter Payton
Role model in sports: Michael Jordan
Role model in life: His parents
Brian's motto: "Always learn."