“I had a family members that were recruited to BYU, and I spoke to a coach at BYU and at that time he wasn’t interested in me,” said Brown. “I wasn’t in good standings with BYU because of my grades. My junior year I brought everything up to where I was eligible my senior year. As far as schools that recruited my senior year when I was eligible I had an offer from UTEP, which was my first offer, and then the next day Miami wanted me to come out to an official visit. I went out there and signed out there.”
However, things have come full circle for Joe Brown and he’s excited. He’s excited with about the fact that he’s leaving the state of Florida and will soon board a plane for the state of Utah. It’s a scenario he simply can’t wait to happen.
“Yeah, I’m leaving Miami and transferring to BYU and I love it!” said Brown. “I can’t wait. The things that went through my head about transferring to BYU were the fact that I wanted to transfer to a place closer to home. I wanted to be at a place where I could interact more with people that I know and that I feel comfortable with. I have a lot of family in Utah and I’m LDS. BYU is a LDS school and it will help strengthen my faith in the Lord. Also there are a lot of Polynesians there. Here at Miami I’m pretty sure I’m the only Poly around, and I’m pretty sure that I’m the only Mormon around.”
Brown wants to be closer to home where he has more in common with the people, so he’s packing his bags, saying goodbye to Miami, ACC play, and transferring to BYU where he can be reignite his collegiate career.
“The biggest thing I’m looking forward to when I get to BYU is having familiar scenery,” said Brown with a chuckle. “It’s going to be like coming back home because I’ll be around LDS people and there are also Polynesians. Being around people who are like me and have the same things in common is something I’m looking forward to when I get to BYU. I can’t wait.”
He’ll finish up this semester at Miami first however then head west to Provo.
“After this semester here at Miami, which ends in May, I’ll be transferring to BYU,” said Brown. “I plan on finishing up this semester then heading out to Provo. The semester ends in May and then I’ll be leaving.”
At Miami not many knew what a Samoan was. Brown had to explain to them that he was like movie star Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, who is also of Samoan descent. Many thought he was Mexican or another nationality.
“They mostly familiarize me with The Rock,” said Brown. “They don’t know what a Polynesian is out here. I had to explain it to them all the time.”
He’ll join a college program with a Polynesian head coach and where many of the assistant coaches also happen to be Polynesian.
“Yeah, I’m just going to go ahead and say I’m excited to be coached by the coaches at BYU,” said Brown. “The coaching staff is full of a bunch of great coaches and a lot of them are Polynesian. I’m excited.”
Being LDS, Brown found it difficult being in a college environment where his standards are foreign and scarcely found. He admits it’s difficult to live the life of an active Latter-Day Saint among an environment where those values simply aren’t promoted.
“Oh yeah, it’s difficult,” said Brown. “When you think of Miami you think about how everything is a party. That’s kind of how it is pretty much out here. Everything is just a party out here. If you really want the stuff they give out here you can have anything you want.”
Brown isn’t sure if he’s related to BYU tailback Algernon Brown or former Cougar defensive lineman Manaia Brown. He is, however, close to two players that will join the program this season.
“Yeah, I know Tyler Luatua really well and he and I are really close friends,” said Brown. “We grew up together and our families went to church together. Also my close friend will be coming home from his mission. I can’t wait for him to get home. His name is Uriah Leiataua and he signed with BYU and won’t be back until June or July. He’s my boy and I’m excited to see him again.”
Having already played and redshirted, Brown will try and compete for a starting position from day one.
“I’ll have three years to play three at BYU,” said Brown. “I used a red shirt year already my first year here. Then last year I played, so, yeah, when I get to BYU I want to come in and win a starting position right away.”
Brown's plan is to hopefully petition the NCAA to allow him to play immediately in 2016 but he has yet to hear if that waiver will be granted.