Chris Brown leaves Michigan early for NHL

Junior forward Chris Brown of the Michigan hockey team has decided to leave school early and sign with the Phoenix Coyotes of the NHL.

Brown played in 125 games for the Wolverines over his three-year career. He scored 34 goals and had 46 assists and was named All-CCHA Honorable Mention this season.

Michigan hockey coach Red Berenson, who discourages his players from leaving early, was not happy with Brown's choice.

"We are disappointed in Chris' decision to leave Michigan and not graduate with his class," Berenson said in a university press release.

In the 2009 NFL draft, Brown was chosen by the Coyotes in the second round (No. 36 overall) and today, he signed to an entry-level contract with the team.

"I want to thank the Michigan coaching staff, my teammates and all the fans who have made my three years in Ann Arbor an experience that I will cherish forever," Brown said in a university press release. "This was a very difficult decision for me to make, but at the same time I am excited about this opportunity."