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The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

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Charlie Brown

Photo by Luke Malanga, ’20

Shooting for the stars

Originally from Wynnefield, Pa. current Saint Joseph’s University freshman Charlie Brown played four years of high school basketball at George Washington High School. After his four years, Brown decided he wasn’t quite ready for college in both basketball and academic fronts.

“I just wanted to get better school-wise and mentally and physically because I knew coming straight out of high school I wasn’t going to be ready,” Brown said.

A prep year between the typical four years of high school and college isn’t something that happens too often, but NBA AllStar Andre Drummond is one success story from this path. In fact, he attended the same prep school—St. Thomas More School in Oakdale, Conn—as Brown. Nonetheless, Brown had no idea it was even an option.

“My dad just kept putting it in my head,” Brown said. “One day I was just like, ‘All right, it’s only going to benefit me.’ So I was like, ‘All right, I’ll take the chance. I’ll take the opportunity.’”

Brown said there aren’t many opportunities for a prep year in the Philadelphia area, which is why he went to Connecticut. According to Brown, Connecticut has many prep opportunites, which he highly recommended.

By the time he got to St. Thomas More, Saint Joseph’s started showing interest in Brown. During his junior year, Brown committed to Saint Joseph’s.

“[Brown] was a young senior chronologically, physically and athletically,” Brown’s prep year coach Jerre Quinn said. “He has a great work ethic. He’s long, he’s athletic, and he’s not afraid of competition. He loves to compete. He has a lot of potential.”

Quinn also called Brown’s prep year an “exponentially great idea.”

According to Quinn, Brown needed to work on his defense during his prep year, something that Quinn feels is of crucial importance to excel in college basketball.

Brown’s shooting ability is something that was refined during his prep year. Quinn claims it was one of the things that Brown really worked on while at St. Thomas More. The coaches tweaked his shot a bit by bringing his shot and his follow-through higher. As a result, he shoots the ball better and gets shots off quicker.

“Charlie Brown, he can really, really, really, really score,” St. Joe’s Head Coach Phil Martelli said. “He can really shoot the ball. He can score, and that’s a major concern because we just haven’t scored the ball easily over these four and a half or five weeks that we’ve been together…He’ll play a lot.”

Even Brown admits that it’s something he wouldn’t have had if he didn’t attend St. Thomas More.

“I think I shoot the ball really well,” Brown said. “And I think we have had a lot of shooters and I think I can score the ball.”

In addition to scoring, there’s a long list of improvements Brown made during his time at St. Thomas More.

“I think my strength got better. I think in the classroom I got smarter. I know a lot of different things, and I just became a better person,” Brown said.

Quinn mentioned that when he met Brown, he needed confidence. According to Brown, he found plenty at St. Thomas More.

“I think that I wasn’t experienced in high school games-wise,” Brown said. “Going to prep school, I got like forty-something games under my belt, so that helped build my experience and confidence.”

Still, though, Brown is continuing to find more confidence with the help of some of his teammates. According to Brown, sophomore captain Lamarr Kimble and junior James Demery have taken him under their wing.

“They’ve really been talking to me, trying to build my confidence up,” Brown said. “Just talking to me about everything – school, basketball, anything in general.”

His ultimate goal is that of any basketball player at any age–the NBA. Although for Brown, it seems a bit more reasonable.

“[My] number two [school] was Wisconsin,” Brown said. “I had a lot of big schools, but big names don’t really bother me or nothing like that. Everybody thinks that because you’re going to a big school, you’re going to the NBA, basically, or going to a higher level. I just wanted to prove a point.”

Quinn says that Brown will fit right into Martelli’s style of play.

“I’d be surprised if he didn’t have a great four years at St. Joe’s,” Quinn said. “He’s going to have a great career at St. Joe’s.”

Although Brown was a shooting guard at George Washington, he will most likely play small forward for the Hawks, the same position he played at St. Thomas More. Since his time at George Washington, Brown’s grown a couple of inches and claims that he’s still growing.

“Basketball–it comes from the heart,” Brown said. “It doesn’t matter what age, or what type of group. It just comes from the heart.”

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