February 28, 2011

Brown raves about Big Orange junior day

It would be easy to look at the gaudy, eye-popping offensive statistics of Beniquez Brown and assume the Florence, Ala., native is merely an unstoppable force with the ball in his hands.

But the 6-foot-1, 205-pound Brown --- who has gashed foes for more than 2,100 yards and 32 touchdowns through his first two varsity seasons at tailback --- does similar damage on the defensive side of the ball. He's somehow found the energy and time to amass 214 tackles and two interceptions during that same time frame.

Recruited by UT super-recruiter Lance Thompson, Brown also found the time to visit Tennessee during the weekend for the Vols' second-ever junior day under high-rising coach Derek Dooley.

"It was great. It was real exciting. They showed me a lot of things," Brown said of his Saturday on Rocky Top. "Once again, I was surprised with what they had to offer. Academics-wise, they pushed that, and everything they have to offer is just top of the line. Like they told me whatever they want, they can pretty much get it so I'm very excited."

Despite having a fellow Florence High product on the Tennessee roster in Carson Anderson, Brown admitted he was a blank slate about the Vols prior to this trip.

"Nothing really. This is my first visit. A guy that went to my high school, Carson Anderson, he went to Florence High School," Brown said. "I knew he came up here, and so I came for junior day and really enjoyed it."

Brown said UT joins powers Alabama and Auburn as the first three programs to offer a scholarship for the 2012 signing class. He's been hearing more and more from the Vols and Thompson in recent weeks.

"I've been hearing from them the last few weeks, and they offered me," he said. "Coach Thompson is recruiting me. It's real good. He calls, checks in on me. Just makes sure everything is good and just, you know, keeps in touch and I really enjoy it."

Brown is going to learn as much as possible about a number of programs in the coming weeks. He visited Alabama's junior day last weekend, is set to take in Auburn this week and has follow-up trips to both Mississippi State and Georgia.

As for what he believes makes him a success on the football field, Brown broke it down into simple terms.

"Running, just playing running back is my strength and tackling on defense. I just need to work on maybe getting a little faster and stronger," Brown said. "I see the field well (with the ball in his hands). I have speed to break away, and I just try to be a punishing runner."

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