High school: Southlake Carroll (TX)
After winning a kicking battle over Mauro Bondi in fall camp, the true freshman was thrown into the fire. The scholarship kicker connected on 14-of-21 field goals and was perfect on 59 PAT attempts. Brown’s 7.8 points per game ranked seventh in the Big Ten and fourth among kickers.
Also handling kickoff duties after Mauro Bondi’s broken collarbone, you have to wonder if leg-fatigue set in for Brown?
While not up to Nebraska standards over the last decade, Brown’s season was a success if grading on a freshman curve.
Brown appeared to be “the guy,” in spring football, but might have some stiff competition when walk-on junior college kicker Jamie Sutcliff hits town. A former D-1 kicker at Utah, Sutcliff was at Pierce College in 2014 and one of the best junior college kickers in the country.
Brown appears to be once again heading into the fall with likely a kicking competition on his hands. Competition should make him better.
“He struggles at times from what I can tell with his hips – getting them squared up with the goal posts,” said Nebraska special teams coach Bruce Read. “But he’s a hard-working kid, a talented guy.”
Read that says by not getting his hips square, at times he’s putting a weird spin on the football, which shows up even more when he’s on the right hash.
BRR projection: Judging by Read’s reaction to Brown this spring, he might not be completely sold on the former Texas prep. Read has already replaced the long snapper on special teams and wouldn’t be afraid to put Brown on the sidelines if Sutcliff was the better option. Brown still has a redshirt year, which might be another motivation to go with Sutcliff.
We ultimately think Brown wins out, but wouldn’t call it a slam dunk prediction. Read's decision to recruit another kicker, even a high-profile walk-on, shows he wants some competition for Brown.
How he ended up in Lincoln: The brother of former Nebraska kicker Kris Brown, Drew committed to Nebraska the June before his senior year, when he showcased his leg at Nebraska’s special teams camp. He did not take any other visits.
Brown’s kicking career in high school was one of the best the state of Texas has ever seen. The former three-star kicker made 187-of-188 PAT attempts his junior and senior year, connecting on 18-of-21 field goal attempts.