Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports
For our next installment of the 100 day countdown to kickoff against North Dakota State University, 91 is both the number of days until football as well as the number of regular season tackles for Arthur Brown in 2012. One of the top linebackers in the country and an invaluable part of K-State’s Fiesta Bowl berth, let’s take one more look at the linebacker Baltimore traded up to select and replace future Hall of Fame player Ray Lewis.
Brown came out of Wichita East High School with the choice to attend any of the greatest programs in the nation – Alabama, Florida, LSU, Oklahoma, USC, and others (including K-State) all offered scholarships in exchange for his services. However, he chose the University of Miami where he struggled more than expected as a freshman and eventually transferred to K-State after his sophomore year. He came to Manhattan with a cloud of suspicion after being named in an article along with his brother Bryce that alleged several students, coaches and administrators were either complicit or directly received benefits from ex-booster and convicted felon Nevin Shapiro. However, he was never implicated of any wrongdoing.
Per NCAA rules, Brown set out the 2010 season as a redshirt before suiting up his junior year. His two years playing at K-State were phenomenal, as he fulfilled all five of the stars recruiting services awarded him coming out of high school. Brown’s most notable play in 2011 was recording the first interception of RGIII that season. The play late in the fourth quarter not only halted Griffin’s streak of 110 attempts without an interception, it also led to Anthony Cantele’s game winning field goal to beat #15 Baylor 36-35. He finished the season with 101 tackles and two sacks to go along with his interception while being named Big 12 newcomer of the year.
Brown picked up exactly where he left off last season on his way to being named the Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year. He had another notable interception, becoming the first to intercept Geno Smith when K-State walloped West Virginia seven games into the season. In sum, he totaled four pass break ups, two interceptions (one returned for touchdown), seven tackles for loss, and one sack. Including the Fiesta Bowl, he finished with triple digit tackles the second straight year with 100, giving him 201 during his time at K-State. He was named an All-American his senior year and joined Mark Simoneau and Terence Newman as the only Wildcats to be named defensive player of the year.
Brown was selected with the 52nd overall pick in the 2013 draft and was ranked the #5 outside linebacker in the class by CBS Sports, although his side-to-sideline speed always made him a better inside linebacker prospect. He is expected to contribute immediately to the Ravens and be an anchor for one of the most feared defenses of the past decade and half.
To work backward in the countdown, visit 92 days, where we examine the 92-yard drive against West Virginia that validated K-State’s championship aspirations.