|Photo Credit: Brant Sanderlin/AJC|
It feels like we’ve been asking this question for longer than necessary as Marlon Brown was supposed to be the gem of Georgia’s 2009 signing class. On that signing day, if you had told anyone that Brown would be entering his junior season with a stat line of 13 receptions, 148 yards, and one touchdown, they might have asked if you needed professional help.
He was a star at Harding Academy in Memphis and was considered a lock to become the same at the next level—how could he possibly fail playing alongside the likes of A.J. Green? Brown was coming into a good situation, possibly being able to make a mark early with Mohammed Massaquoi exiting in 2008, and he had every opportunity to break down the freshman wall and become the next big thing at Georgia.
However, as it turns out, the mediocre competition at Harding Academy proved to be a bigger obstacle to his development than some thought it might. He wasn’t prepared for the physical play of the SEC and was never able to find his groove on the football field.
Truthfully, he should have redshirted his first year as his two catches for 15-yards weren’t worth the paper they were printed on. Even more, it was clear that he needed more time to learn the routes, learn the league, and add more weight to his lanky frame—the height was there, the strength was not.
By 2010, the question was no longer ‘is he ready?’, but rather ‘where’s he at?’ and if ever there were a time for him to shine, it was last season—A.J. was suspended, the running game was mediocre, and Aaron Murray was looking to make new connections, in the passing game, with anyone willing to step their game up—so what happened?
Well, Brown saw much of that season cut down by a shoulder injury. He was never able to get healthy enough to make a real contribution.
2011 is already seeing some positive reports on Brown out of spring practice, but the same was said in 2010—and look how that turned out. At this point, it would just be nice to see Brown doing something other than traversing the sidelines as he’s not become nearly the player Georgia expected him to be when he arrived in 2009.
It’s time for Marlon Brown to make something happen at Georgia and hopefully this is the year that finally happens.