Signing Day Capsule: Steve Brown

Columbus east (IN) star Steve Brown narrowed his choices to Michigan and Notre Dame in early July. When decision time came, his childhood love for the Wolverines was too much for the Irish to overcome. He went on to become the sixth pledge in Michigan's 2006 class.

Steve Brown
East HS
(Columbus IN)
NR: ****
Position Rank: #10

His Recruiting Story
In an All-State junior campaign, Columbus East (IN) safety Steve Brown had over 1,700 all-purpose yards and 17 TDs on offense, and 30 solo tackles and three interceptions on defense. Those stats garnered attention from a number of Midwest programs, but in the spring before his senior year, Brown exploded onto the scene and became a national recruit.

Over four hundred athletes traveled to Ann Arbor in mid-April for the annual Midwest Nike combine. While there were a number of notable performances, none may have been more impressive than that of Steve Brown. The athleticism that made him so successful in his junior year was on full display. At 6-1, 200-lbs. he ran the forty in 4.39 seconds, had a 35-inch vertical, bench pressed 185-lbs. 24 times, and ran a 4.3 second shuttle. Brown already held offers from Indiana, Purdue, Illinois, and Nebraska prior to the camp, but that list quickly grew after his showing.

Brown made the most of his time in Ann Arbor by taking the opportunity to speak with the Wolverines coaching staff the day before the camp. "I grew up watching Michigan and Charles Woodson all of the time," Brown said. "I took an unofficial visit to Michigan yesterday (the day before the camp), and I talked with Coach Carr last night. He said they wanted to watch me today before offering."

As it turns out, the Wolverines saw all they needed to see and offered Brown a scholarship a few days later. "It was exciting," Brown said. "Coach Carr said they liked me at the combine Saturday and that they had studied my film. And that he wanted me to play for Michigan and was offering me a scholarship."

Charlie Weis was also on hand to see Brown's combine performance, thus prompting him to extend a scholarship on Notre Dames behalf shortly after. Those two storied programs were the only two left standing for the southern Indiana star by the time July rolled around. Still, the Maize Blue always had an edge because of Brown's boyhood love for Michigan. It soon became clear that that was too much for Notre Dame to overcome and he pledged to Michigan at a press conference at his school on August 1st, 2005.

"It was just the place I feel most comfortable with," Brown said of Michigan. "When I was up there or when I’d sit at home and talk to my dad and I’d talk to my mom, or I would just sit there and think while I talked to my girlfriend and friends. When I’d look at other schools, I could see myself playing at Notre Dame, but I couldn’t see myself playing against Michigan. I’ve grown up a Michigan fan all my life.”

Brown was named an Army All-American during his senior campaign, but a broken ankle cut short his final year as a prep. He had recovered enough by the All-Star game to participate, but he still wasn't 100%. Brown is on track to be fully healed by the time he reports to Ann Arbor this summer.

GoBlueWolverine Commentary
When we focused our attention on Brown at the Ann Arbor Nike combine, we definitely got an eyeful. He excelled in the defensive back drills; displaying excellent recovery speed and a nice break on the ball. On one occasion in the one-on-one drills, he jumped a quick slant for an interception, (one of the few times that was done all day).

"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.

Brown has an excellent chance of seeing time in the defensive backfield right from day one. scouting report: Excellent size. Physically intimidating for a defensive back. Athletic enough to play on either side of the ball in college. Can come off a spot and accelerate very quickly. Smooth. Quick feet and elusive. Shows elusiveness as a punt and kick returner. Hits like a linebacker. Has an extra gear.

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