It's about 5 minutes to game time. The crowd is arriving late but the band is trying to get the crowds juices flowing beforehand. As I scan the crowd something looks different. In the front row in the middle of the Orange Krush is an older gentleman wearing and Illini warmup jersey. Is it? Could it be? No way is that him! Yes it was, Dee Brown's dad was fired up on Saturday afternoon. Getting the crowd pumped and shouting out to the Illini players was just one of the few things Mr. Brown did. He also danced and displayed the type of energy that his son plays with.
After the game, Dee was asked about his fathers antics. "It's good to see him out there having fun like I'm having fun. I noticed him before the game, he told me he was gonna sit over there. It's funny man, I laughed, it's hilarious. He's got so much energy man it's ridiculous, it's like I can't even explain it. He jumps around all the time and always wanting to play and talk. It's good you know. That's where I get it from."
Dee's dad basically stood the whole game. During timeouts he danced to the beat of the band. He was right in between a few Orange Krush members. Did Mr. Brown secretly convert into an Orange Krush fanatic?? " They just invited him, I guess he's an honorary member. He'll be there the next 3 games, all the home games, you know he loves it and the people love him too," said Brown.
Deron Williams and Luther Head also had a few comments about Brown's dad. "If you think Dee talks a lot, man it's not even comparable! He'll talk your ear off about anything," said Williams.
Head said he was trying to hide from Mr. Brown after the game. "I owe him some pushups. I'm trying to avoid him right now," said Head. Williams chimed in saying "If you miss a free throw you owe him 25 pushups."
I don't know about everyone else, but I think it's great to see a players parent get so involved in the game. Thank you Mr. Brown for showing us the energy and enthusiasm for Illinois basketball that we love to see. We hope to see you dancing again.