Now as a senior and the expected starter for the 2006 season, Brown has all the confidence he can keep improving his production from last season.
"I have a new confidence not because I am a starter, but just because I know that I am better and I honestly feel that I am the best defensive tackle in the country," Brown said. "My work ethic will dictate the best player I can be."
This spring, Brown's work ethic will be on display for two new defensive line coaches, John Palermo and former UM graduate assistant Clint Hurtt. Brown is excited to have Hurtt back coaching at UM.
"He is similar to coach Mark," Brown said. "He likes to do things up-tempo and a certain kind of way. It is not much of a change. The main thing he wants is to fine tune all of our talents and all the things we do well and work on the things we do not do well. It is not really an adjustment; it is more us trying to make a smooth transition.
"He is a hands-on, get in your face type coach which is what we are used to. I feel like it is a pleasure for me to work with Coach Hurtt we know and understand each other."
Already blessed with the necessary physical tools and unusual agility for a player that is 6-foot-5 and 307-pounds, Brown believes he needs to focus on the mental aspects of football this spring.
"With me I have a lot of things down," Brown said. "They just want me to understand the game to where I am not thinking and second-guessing myself. Get to the point where I am just playing."
Entering his senior season, Brown will look to take more of a leadership role this spring vocally and lead by example. Brown is encouraged by the young talent that is at defensive tackle. He shared his opinion on two young linemen in particular.
"Antonio is by far the furthest along," Brown said. "He is doing very well. Antonio is a bigger guy. He is so big that what he does best is knock people back and get penetration. Luqman can do the same type of things because he is not small either. They just have to work on their fundamentals and they will get good."
Brown made huge strides during the 2005 season and will look to carry the momentum of that season to 2006. With his potential and work ethic, Brown could be the most protective defensive tackle for UM in a few years.
David Lake is a Staff Writer with CanesTime and can be contacted by emailing him at email@example.com