Four-Star OL Tommy Brown Talks Alabama, UCLA Visits, Oregon Up Next

Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei offensive lineman Tommy Brown visited Alabama earlier in the week and stayed closer to home to check out UCLA Thursday.

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It was a busy week for mammoth offensive tackle Tommy Brown as the athlete spent two days checking out the Alabama Crimson Tide.

It's already been well documented that Brown has strong ties to the Tide program. His father was on the track team years ago and he has visited the school several times. If the Tide were to offer Brown, they would tough to beat and the tackle spent a couple of days on campus earlier in the week.

"I was there Tuesday and Wednesday with a couple of my teammates (J.T. Daniels, Solomon Tuliaupupu)," Brown said. "On Tuesday, we got to campus around 10:30, sat in some meetings, toured the campus and then watched the team practice. We all met individually with coach (Nick) Saban and I also got to sit on on the offensive line team meetings.

"On Wednesday, I spent the whole day with coach (Brent) Key (OL coach). It was cool, we watched a lot of film together, my film and tape of the Bama offensive line. When we watched my film, it was mostly the bad plays and he would ask me what I did wrong and how I could fix it. Then he had me go up toe white board and draw up protections and even though I was a little nervous, I got them all right. I think he was impressed that I understood all their schemes and protections so that was good."

As for an offer, Brown said he was told to be patient.

"He knows I'm interested and knows that my dad went to Bama," Brown said. "Coach Saban and coach Key both said they need tackles and they like me but said they just want to wait until everything is right. Coach Key told me to make sure I don't commit anywhere yet and to call him if I'm getting close but I plan to take all five of my visits right now so I'm in no rush.

"I really liked it there, Bama is a special place. I like coach Key a lot and it was cool seeing him work with the offensive lineman on the team. I love the strength program they have there and that's huge for me. You spend more time with the strength coach than anyone else and Scott Coachran is known as one of the best in the country so there's a ton of pluses there."

On Thursday, Brown visited UCLA in what his first spring practice this year.

"I was with coach (Hank) Fraley (OL coach) the whole time," Brown said. "They basically let me shadow him the whole practice so I was right there with him in all the drills. I like how he coaches, he's not a yeller or screamer and doesn't get in their face unless it's a lack of effort. If someone screws up, he'll tell them what they did wrong and they show them how to fix it and I can tell the guys on the team respect that.

"They don't have a lot of depth on the line right now and they'll lose a handful of their starters so I see a real opportunity to compete for playing time as a true freshman at UCLA. Being close to home is a factor too. At one point in my recruitment, I was thinking I wanted to get away from home and wasn't look that hard at UCLA or USC but now, I think there are a lot of benefits to staying close by so I do have a high interest in UCLA."

Brown said he plans to visit UCLA again in the summer when the new football facility is done.

"I think it's going to be really nice," Brown said. "I've seen it before and it looks great. I think it's supposed to be done in June so I want to come by again and take a tour and meet with coach (Sal) Alosi. That's the one thing I haven't done on any of my visits to UCLA and like I said, the strength coach and the overall strength program is a big factor in my decision. Hopefully next time I'm there, I'll have an opportunity to meet with him."

Next up for Brown will be a visit to Oregon

"I'll be at Oregon for the spring game (Jan. 29)," Brown said. "I obviously have a lot of respect for coach (Mario) Cristobal (OL coach) from his days at Bama and all the great offensive linemen he coached and developed. He offered me the first week he got to Oregon and we talk all the time, he's really recruiting me hard right now.

"I'm excited to see how I like Eugene and how I fit in there. I'm a cold weather guy so I'm sure I'll enjoy it. I want to meet with the strength coach and see the depth chart. I always tell everyone who asks me, the two biggest factors for me in making my decision are the academics and how good the team will be, so I'll be looking at both of those areas as well."

The California Golden Bears and Washington Huskies are involved with Brown as well.

"I took a visit recently to Washington and loved it there," Brown said. "It was a great trip and they're planning to come by in the spring to see me. They haven't offered me yet but the new OL coach, Scott Huff, said he's interested and just wants more time to evaluate. He said they're only taking two tackles and he's not the kind of coach that just wants to throw out a ton of offers and I respect that.

"I'm in track right now but I told him to let me know what day he's coming by and I'll be sure to skip track that day to work out with the football team. I plan to visit Cal again as well, just not sure when. I was there in January and I'm very comfortable there.

"My cousin Gerran Brown just transferred from Washington to Cal so that's seven Mater Dei players there so it's a nice little pipeline. Like I said, I'm in no rush to commit anywhere and plan to take all my visits so hopefully by the end of the summer, I'll be able to narrow my list down and have a good idea of where I want to go and play it out from there."


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