It’s been an up-and-down collegiate career for Wes Brown.
The Maryland running back came to College Park as a highly-touted recruit. After injuries and multiple suspensions, Brown has one last chance to make an impact.
Prior to signing with the Terrapins, Brown had offers from just about every major program in the country. After all, the Good Counsel (Md.) star was a four-star recruit and one of top running backs in the nation, according to 247Sports.
Brown ended up making an immediate impact during his freshman season. Part of it had to do with the uncertainty in the Maryland backfield.
Justus Pickett didn’t exactly light the world on fire. Over the course of the 2012 season, Pickett averaged a miserable 2.1 yards-per-carry and transferred after the fall semester.
Brown didn’t touch the ball in the season opener against William & Mary. However, over the next two weeks in games against Temple and Connecticut, Brown turned in a pair of solid performances.
The former Good Counsel star rushed for 74 yards and a touchdown on 14 carries against the Huskies in a 24-21 Maryland loss. Brown received double-digit carries in five of the seven games that he played in before going down with season-ending ankle and shoulder injuries.
Brown’s freshman campaign was his most successful during his Maryland career. He finished with 382 yards and two touchdowns on 90 carries.
After Brown was suspended for the 2013 season due to off-the-field issues, his sophomore and junior years produced just 356 and 317 rushing yards respectively.
Part of the reason for Brown never really breaking out was the play of Brandon Ross. Ross came to College Park in the same class as Brown, but the Charter School of Wilmington (Del.) product was far less-heralded.
Ross only had one other scholarship offer from Army, but finished his Maryland career as the program’s fourth all-time leading rusher.
Edmunds had a similar career to Brown as he also had a promising freshman season before falling out of favor with the Hokies. Johnson rushed for just 250 yards on 35 carries, but he did score a pair of 40-plus yard touchdowns in the season finale against Rutgers.
Despite limited playing time in recent years, Brown does have plenty of attributes that make him an appealing option for the Terps.
Brown is a very physical back with great size at 6’1/210 pounds. Oftentimes, when running with the football, he doesn’t go down at the first shred of contact from the defense.
Due to his physical style of play, Brown has been used as a goal line back in the past. Two of three touchdown runs last season came from one yard out.
However, it’s not just the goal line where Brown has been effective. For example, he rushed for a seven-yard touchdown out of the shotgun formation against Wisconsin.
Brown does have solid field vision and seems to have an awareness of what holes he needs to hit.
The senior running back isn’t exactly what you would call flashy. However, he’s efficient and gives the ground game more aggression.
He can have success running off tackle or just straight up the middle on a halfback delay. A majority of Brown’s rushes came when quarterback Perry Hills was out of the shotgun a season ago. With guru Walt Bell running the offense, a good amount of Brown’s carries could come out of that very same formation once again this season.
As was mentioned above, it’s definitely going to be an uphill battle for Brown in terms of staking claim to a bulk of the carries. It’s all going to come down to what happens this summer.
Anything can happen. After all, very few fans thought that Hills would stake claim to the starting quarterback job prior to the 2015 season.
While Brown may not have lived up to expectations thus far, it still can’t be stated enough the amount of talent that this tailback has.