Steve Brown: A Tighter Race Now

"The coaches at both programs (Michigan and Notre Dame) are looking at me more as a safety now because they think I'm going to get too big to play corner," said Indiana DB Steve Brown, from Columbus East High School.

Columbus (Ind.) safety/cornerback Steve Brown (6-1, 200, 4.4) says it's down to a two team race for him between Notre Dame and Michigan. Both have offered.

"I like both programs right now a lot," said Brown, from Columbus East High School. "Both schools offer similar situations in how they want to utilize me on the field. They both have great atmospheres with some rich traditions, and the football is great at both schools. Right now though, I'm mainly focused on the academics that each have to offer.

"I want to study Communications in college, so when I was out at Notre Dame last week for an unofficial visit, I got to meet with one of the professors there and he showed me around the department. I really liked what I saw. They've also got a big list of students at that school that are Communications majors, so I like that. The academics, education and connections I'd have after college are what stand out about Notre Dame right now.

"I've always liked what I've seen at Michigan's program…I've grown up a big fan of theirs as a kid. I was out there for an unofficial (visit) as well, a few weeks ago and I also liked what I saw. I know that they offer some really good academic support there, like tutors and stuff if you need it. That would be great for me because there would be no opportunities to slack off," he said.

"As far as depth goes at both schools, I'd have a better chance at starting early at Notre Dame. Michigan has got a lot of depth to them at my position. So, it would seem pretty appealing for me to go with Notre Dame. But really, no matter where I go, I'm going to have to work hard for a starting spot. I'm not the type to sit back and watch people play…I mean if I'm eligible, I want to play. But it's also appealing to me to compete with other players and have the opportunity to just get better," he said.

"Right now, I'm looking at the positives and negatives of each school. I just want to go to the place where I feel most comfortable. It's a real toss-up between the two. The players at both programs are all really nice and receptive. But with Notre Dame, I already know guys that are committed there, that I'm friends with, like Patrick Kuntz (Notre Dame '05 signee), James Aldridge (RB) and Luke Schmidt (RB).

"I've met James recently through the camps we've done and stuff and we've stayed in contact since. He's called me up a few times to see how Notre Dame has been looking for me. And Luke is cousins with A.J. Edds and that's how we got introduced. Luke's like one of my best friends. It would be nice to know some guys in college right off the bat, but with all that aside, it's still a toss-up between the two schools," he said.

"The coaches at both programs are looking at me more as a safety now because they think I'm going to get too big to play corner.

"I've been told that I'm a safety with cornerback abilities. I've got great lockdown skills and I can get up and jam a receiver no matter how big or fast they are. I run well and use my hips well too. This is going to be my first year playing safety so I need to work on reading the quarterback's eyes more, and pick up my progressions more too."

Final JR (13-1) stats: 25 catches/1000+ yds/5 TDs; 70 carries/800 yds/11 TDs; 30 tackles/3 INTs

Bench: 350/Squat: 500/Power Clean: 320/Vert Jump: 35"

3.0 GPA/1410 SAT (new version)--no retest

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