Mutsumi Takahashi made up his mind to dedicate himself to coaching when he retired as a player for good two years ago.

But the 37-year-old couldn't resist the attraction of putting on the pads and helmet. After a year's absence, he returned to the gridiron as a linebacker for the Elecom Kobe Finies in the X League this year.

For four seasons from 2009, Takahashi played for the Obic Seagulls while he was also the head coach at Otemon Gakuin University, coming and going between Osaka and Chiba, and he felt he was leaving things half-done with both jobs.