Better late than never

CLEMSON – Despite Desmond Brown's late arrival, he's more than happy to finally be on the team he committed to last July. A delayed clearance by the NCAA prevented him from enrolling in the second session of summer classes.

Instead, Brown was left back home in Alabama waiting.

It was quite the learning experience for the former three-star safety with offers from Tennessee, South Carolina and Arkansas.

"I was so anxious because I thought I was getting a month ago," he said after Wednesday's practice. "That just made me be more humble and just work at it harder in the weight room when I knew everybody was up here working hard."

Brown was under the assumption that he'd find himself behind the eight-ball because of his late appearance in Tigertown.

"I thought I would be behind on the playbooks because they couldn't go over the plays with the playbook. I'm just starting out like the rest of the guys," he said.

And now that he's finally on campus, Brown couldn't be happier. Actually, he's head over heels in love.

"I love the campus. I love the workouts. I love everything about it—the coaches, the players. There's nothing I don't love. I see it right now, I chose the perfect place," he said.

That honeymoon feeling was compromised once practice started. Tuesday's practice was a rude awakening.

"It was just like a freshman day, I've got to say…we're getting chewed out. This isn't high school. I see it right now," Brown said.

Things improved on day two.

"Today was a lot better. The coaches and the older players, really the older players, they've been teaching and helping out," he said. "When we got a problem, we run right over there, me, (Bashaud) Breeland and the rest of the DBs, we run right over there and they're coaching us up, telling us to run off the field."

Brown, who was rated as the No. 64 safety in the class of 2010, will have to wait in line for his turn to play. He's looking up the strong safety depth chart at first-team All-American DeAndre McDaniel.

"It's an honor for the coaches to feel like I can back him up eventually in the next three, four or five years," Brown said. "I feel it's an honor just to know my future is in his shoes, whether I take advantage of it or not. I'm real excited."

If he's going to play anytime soon, Brown admitted that he'll have to pick up the pace.

"I talked to my coach back home last night. The one thing I pointed out, out of everything is the speed of the game," he said. "Everybody's bigger, faster and stronger. It's just the speed you've got to adjust to. I think I'm coming along well. I keep studying and referring back to the older guys about this play and that play. I think we'll be alright." Top Stories