Houston (Texas) Alief Elsik defensive back Chris Brown has started the process of exploring college options, recently returning from his UCLA official visit to Westwood. The three-star athlete, Scout's fifth-ranked safety in Texas, said despite the loss to Arizona State, he enjoyed learning more about the Bruins' program.
“It was beautiful. Great school, great coaches, great environment. I enjoyed myself, it was a great weekend.
"We just had fun, got to meet some of the guys. I saw a lot of things up front; I like how the school runs things, I like that even though the team was down, they continued to fight. It was a great game even though they fell short. But you know, you can’t win them all but you can win the rest,” he said.
Brown, who was on his first-ever trip to Los Angeles, said he really enjoyed the atmosphere at the Rose Bowl.
“The Rose Bowl stadium is a beautiful stadium. I just feel like it’s cool that the Rose Bowl is your home stadium,” he said.
Brown has continued to build a solid relationship with both defensive backs coach Demetrice Martin and linebackers/special teams coach Scott White.
Plenty of other programs are still knocking on Brown's door, with the 5-foot-11, 185-pounder recently naming a "top schools" list that included UCLA, Arizona State, Texas, Michigan, Michigan State, Kansas, and Oklahoma. Brown does plan to take more official visits, but he's currently unsure of the details.
“I have a couple of visits that I’ve said I would take, but none of the dates are set in stone with me right now due to my season and how playoffs may fall. I have a couple of things in mind, but nothing is set in stone, so I don’t want to release too much information at this point. I’m kind of all over the place right now,” he said.
Brown also mentioned that he's unsure of when he'll make his final decision.
“I have no time limit. I am taking my time with it; after I take all my officials I’ll have a better idea. I might hold out to Signing Day, but I’m not sure,” he said.
What is the athlete looking for in the school to which he commits? Brown highlights his relationship with the staff, as well as the level of academics offered and how he could fit into the team's defense.
“I’ve grown close to coaches from all of my top schools. A couple of coaches that have been loyal to me and have been with me since day one. I keep in contact with those guys and they stay in touch with me.
“All the schools that I could attend have a great academic program. Academics will play a big role in where I commit. Also, I’m looking to see where I can come in and make the biggest impact," he said.
While Scout has Brown ranked at the safety position, the athlete says that college coaches have spoken with him about playing various roles in the secondary. Early playing time is attractive, but it won't be the ultimate decision maker for Brown.
"A lot of schools see that I am a versatile player and they know I could play both corner and safety, so it’s really where I fit best within that school’s scheme. Playing right away is definitely something I want to do, but if that’s not the case then I’m just going to sit back and be a sponge and soak up all the information I can so I can be the best when I get out there,” he said.
Recruiting aside, the athlete is working hard to make his senior season his most productive with the Rams as he takes on a bigger role in the team's secondary and is consistently seeing improvement within his own game.
“My season is going great. I’ve got to make plays when I can because a lot of teams are trying to play keepaway from me, but I consider myself a playmaker and I make plays when the opportunity is there. I’ve been playing corner these past couple of games and it has been great for me; I have had great stats at corner and I’ve been pretty versatile this year, playing corner and safety. I've just been learning the game more, knowing where to be on the field and dissecting receivers, being a route dissector,” he said.
He also hopes to leave a legacy within the program that stretches further than his offer list.
“I want people to be able to say that I was a team player. I want my teammates to be able to say that I didn't just think about myself this year," he said.