When Rome appeared to collapsing about UCF last fall, as the Knights lost a pair of touted 2015 commitments, fellow pledge Chad Brown was there to anchor the pillars. His placement and role in the recruiting class mirrors his contributions on the court, as the strong and athletic big man performs his role admirably for Florida Elite.
With a potential impact player in Deng Adel now showcasing the most offensive ability for the squad, Brown can focus on what he does best: rebound, block shots, run the floor and hammer home dunks.
As I wrote last fall, Brown's offense remains a work in progress. He can hit a short turnaround jump shot, but he doesn't yet post effectively versus national opponents and doesn't appear to have polish facing the rim.
But he manages to be effective nevertheless. Brown made some impressive left-handed tips around the rim this past weekend at the Adidas Gauntlet event, and he also sprinted ahead for finishes on the break. He blocked one shot very impressively with his left hand, a sign that perhaps he's beginning to pick up greater nuance on the defensive end.
He's a raw player at this point, no question, but we as a staff admire his tenacity and apparent happiness to compete with an expectation for multiple shot attempts per contest. Brown doesn't waver in his effort even when he's having a quiet statistical game, always an encouraging sign for a young competitor.
Clearly, he must fashion an offensive game that can succeed in college. Along with that, he missed some free throws badly and likely will need to focus on that area as well.
But with a college-ready body and a workhorse mentality to match, Brown has a chance to crack our national top 100 next month.