Academics and the right fit proved to be the difference for CB Brown
As he continued to move through the recruiting process, Washington, D.C. cornerback DJ Brown had a number of quality options. He took some visits, when to some camps, and one school that kept showing as one of the best options was Virginia.
A few weeks ago, the St. John's College High School standout decided the time had come and he decided to commit to the Cavaliers. Now, with some timing having passed, he remains sure he made the right call.
"I went up there for the camp in June and I really liked the coaching staff a lot," Brown told CavsCorner this past weekend. "Then I went out to Stanford for a camp and then I went to Arizona just for a visit and I already had that offer. So, really, it was between Arizona, Vandy, and UVa. And Vandy already had two corner commits so I wasn't looking at them quite as much.
"But even though I liked Arizona a lot, I just felt like UVa was the best fit for me both on and off the field," he added.
Brown, who wants to do something business related in college, says that the academic component was a significant part of his decision.
"Yeah, the education aspect played a huge role in it," he said. "And I liked that about a lot of the schools. I just thought UVa was best for me."
Led by defensive backs coach Nick Howell, Virginia made him feel like he fit in well during camp but also made him feel like he was important to the class as a whole.
"Coach Howell had hit me up sometime in the spring and we talked some and then later on, I think in May, I told him I was real interested in UVa and he told me to make sure I came to their camp so they could see me and I could see them," Brown recalled. "I performed pretty well at the camp and I knew they liked me a lot so the offer didn't surprise me at all.
"I knew I wanted to take some other visits just to see what they had to offer but I knew then that UVa was going to be in my top two or three," he said. "And that's the way it played out."
The 6-foot-1, 185-pound cornerback had offers from Arizona, Boston College, Navy, and Vanderbilt with interest from Maryland, NC State, Purdue, Stanford and UConn, among others.
"I definitely feel very relieved to have it out of the way," he said. "Now I can focus on my senior season and coming out strong. I definitely want to play well this year, especially those first five games. That's when we play our non-conference games against IMG and all these big schools. I definitely want to come out strong in those games."
It's been a while since he started playing the game but certainly the game has put him in a position to do some big things.
"In youth football, I was always one of the bigger kids so I played running back and linebacker," Brown said. "Then once I got to 7th grade, that's when I started playing unlimited and stuff and I moved to receiver and that's about the time when I played corner. In 8th grade, I didn't play a lot of corner because I played mainly offense but once I got to high school, that's when I really started focusing on cornerback."
Comfortable as ever at corner now, Brown feels like he's got a great opportunity in front of him in Charlottesville.
"As far as the recruiting class, I'm the only corner commit right now in the 2018 class," he said. "They've told me I can definitely come in and earn time early. A lot of coaches say that but with them, I know that it's true. I can come in and have that chance to play early. I feel like I can make an impact early."
One of Brown's other objectives is to help the Cavaliers recruit both in this class and in the future. That includes working on his current teammate and three-star 2019 cornerback Quinten Johnson, who already has an offer from UVa.
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