May 1, 2009

Camp to bring Brown back

The benefits of attending summer football camp are two-fold in the eyes of inside linebacker Jonathan Brown of Memphis-Christian Brothers.

Not only can the experience serve as a teaching tool for a player to take back to his respective schools in the fall. But it can also go a long way in the development of a relationship between a coaching staff and prospect that could prove beneficial in the long run.

For the 6-foot-1, 225-pound Brown this has become first-hand knowledge after taking part in several summer camps a year ago with plans of doing so again with LSU being one of his schools of choice.

"You can learn techniques and the ones I learned helped me out during the season," Brown said. "It also gives them (coaching staffs) more time to evaluate whereas before they just see you on film. It gives them an extra look. So camps can be very beneficial."

Before he turns his total attention to the summer Brown is looking forward another in a series of unofficial visits this spring. Brown has been able to attend academic Junior Days at Ole Miss, Alabama and Illinois and is scheduled to make an unofficial visit sometime this week to in-state school Vanderbilt.

"I want to go to a few more places but time is limited right now," Brown said. "Hopefully during the summer I'll have a lot more time to check out a few more campuses.

The school with the biggest impact on Brown thus far has been Illinois where the Junior Day experience was enough to name the Illini of the Big 10 Conference his leader.

"That still holds true right now," Brown said. "I like everything (head) coach (Ron) Zook is talking about it but I'm still open to any other schools. Right now they're at the top of my list. That doesn't mean I'm shutting down the camp or anything."

Scholarship offers for Brown have come from LSU, Illinois, Memphis, Ole Miss, Texas Tech and Middle Tennessee. He's also received interest from Kentucky, Vanderbilt, Virginia, Purdue, Clemson and Wake Forest.

LSU is among the list of aforementioned schools that Brown would like to take part in summer camp action along with Ole Miss, Tennessee and Vanderbilt.

While Brown is regarded for his rugged play on defense where he recorded 75 total tackles with 19 stops behind the line of scrimmage with three interceptions and two sacks in 2008 apparently LSU sees something in him that no other school has to date.

"(LSU running backs) Coach (Larry) Porter is recruiting me and we have a good relationship," Brown said. "I talk to him every other week or keep in touch through email. I think I fit in good at LSU. He said I could play both sides of the football but he likes me at fullback."

Playing that side of the football isn't without precedent for Brown who led Christian Brothers with nine rushing touchdowns from the fullback position. He rushed for 330 yards and gained 5.4 yards per carry.

"Inside the 30 is where I go to work," said Brown, who helped Christian Brothers to a 7-4 record and Division II-AA state playoff berth.

But make no mistake about it there's no doubt where Brown wants to play in college.

"I want to stay on defense," Brown said. "It just feels on offense you can't get as much accomplished as you can on defense. I like knocking people's heads off."

Should everything go according to plan and Brown be able to participate in LSU's summer camp it will mark his second trip to Baton Rouge after making an unofficial visit last fall for a home game where he experienced Tiger Stadium's reknown atmosphere.

"It was crazy," Brown said. "I think once I get back down there and check things out it will help answer some more questions I have."

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