"I'd been wanting to go ahead and commit"

Adel is a city in south Georgia that supposedly took its name from the middle letters in Philadelphia. It's also the place the Crimson Tide of Alabama may have found their middle linebacker of the future in Shannon Brown of Cook County High School. Brown gave his commitment to the Alabama coaching staff last weekend at Junior Day.

"I'd been wanting to go ahead and commit to them," said Shannon Brown of Alabama. "So it's something I probably should have done earlier. Something was holding me back until last weekend. I don't know, I wanted to wait until I was sure."

Brown had offers from Georgia, Ole Miss, Auburn, Tennessee, Clemson, East Carolina, and Texas Tech. Also, very much in the picture was North Carolina.

"I think their academics was the biggest factor in my decision," said Brown. "I like how they want you to leave with a diploma, provide tutoring, and stay on you to do well in the classroom. I plan on majoring in culinary arts."

That type of extra push may be what Brown needs. He was disciplined by his coach for being tardy to practice one too many times causing him to miss the last four games of Cook County High School's '09 season. Brown still finished up the year with 122 tackles to lead the team.

Brown had the opportunity to mingle with future teammates at Junior Day and meet with the coaches.

"It was pretty good, real good really," Brown said of the Junior Day event. "We toured the field house, campus, facilities, and the stadium. My favorite part was getting to meet with the coaching staff, but everything really. I hung in the players' lounge just chilling.

"Julio (Jones) was there, Mark Ingram, Robbie Green, Trent (Richardson), Marques Maze, (Greg) McElroy, and (Phillip) Sims, the new guy."

Next year Brown will play the role of the new guy on campus. Many of the top juniors in the southeast joined him in Tuscaloosa, one who had already given his commitment to Alabama.

"Yeah, I got to talk with that Calloway guy," said Brown.

Brent Calloway and Shannon Brown could make an awesome 1-2 punch at linebacker in coming years at the Capstone. They both spent time with their soon-to-be position coaches.

"We talked defense with Coach Sal and Coach Pruitt," Brown said.

Although recruited for defense Brown sees a lot of action at running back at Cook County High. He's shed 20 pounds to a spry 6-2, 225, and was timed in the 40 at 4.55 weighing close to 250. He competes on the track team in the 100 meter and 200 meter dash and the shot put.

Tragedy stuck Cook County High School when head coach Mac Thompson died suddenly at 39 in early February.

"We have to build on this," said Brown. "When we go out there next season we have to give every ounce we have for Coach Thompson."

Ken Cofer, who was coaching the offensive at Cook County, was recently named head coach. He'll lead the Hornets on the field next season. They finished 7-6 a year ago making it to the 3rd round of the playoffs.

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