Throwback Thursday: Patrick Brown
June 30, 2011
LAWRENCE, Kan. –
Patrick Brown was a linebacker for the University of Kansas from 1994-1998. He was a member of the 1995 Jeep-Eagle Aloha Bowl Championship team and was a twice named to the Big 12 All-Conference Team. The Westerville, Ohio native was named a team captain his senior season by his teammates. Brown graduated from KU in 1999, with a Bachelor s in Communications and received an MBA from the University of Phoenix. He currently lives in Lawrence with his wife, and two children, where he is the CEO and President of Abram Brown Financial Consultants, LLC.
How did you first get started playing football?
“I first started playing football because my friends played and more or less I wanted to hang out with them. Oddly enough I did not like football at first, and I really had no intentions of playing it for long. I call it the Forrest Gump mentality, because I ended up playing just because my friends were and that led to me getting a scholarship. It is funny the way things work out sometimes.”
When it came time to decide where to go to school, how did KU become your eventual choice?
“Growing up for me, basketball was my favorite sport and that’s what I wanted to play in college. What ended up happening was that I got more attention in football than I did in basketball. When I started making my recruiting trips I was naïve about football and I was not aware what schools I should be looking at. After speaking with academic advisors, I knew that I wanted to go to KU and what really sold me believe it or not, were the Jayhawk Towers and its free cable. So in the end coming to KU had less to do about football.
What are some of your most memorable times living in the towers?
“There are a lot of great memories in the Towers. Glen Mason was the coach that recruited me and one of the things he used to always say was, ‘Your best memories always come from college with the friends that you meet.’ Of course being young at that time you really could not understand or appreciate what he said until you look back on it. The Towers was the place we all would get together to play cards and hang out. I definitely have some fond memories of that place and I always point them out to my kids whenever we drive through campus and say, ‘that’s were daddy lived.'”
What do you remember most about your football career at KU?
“There are a lot of things that stand out in my mind, but what I remember most is our victory over Colorado in Boulder in 1995. That was my redshirt freshman season and we went into Boulder and upset Colorado on their home turf. I remember this game because at that time our football team was heavy underdogs and the fact that we went to their place and beat them sparked us for the rest of the season. Our record for that season was 10-2 and we won the Aloha Bowl that year.”
Does a game or play stand out to you thinking back on your football career?
“The game that really stands out to me was the first or second game of my junior year. This game was special to me because I intercepted two passes for two touchdowns. At the time I was not thinking that meant anything, but after the game I got bombarded by all kinds of reporters and it turns out that it was the first time in KU history and the second time in NCAA history that a player returned two interceptions for touchdowns in one game. I basically made the record books and did not even realize it. It was a very exciting game for me and it is something that I can brag to my buddies about.”
After graduating in 1999 was playing professionally and aspiration of yours?
“When I finished my football career at KU I still had aspirations of playing for two reasons. The first was to say that I did play at the next level and the second reason was because I wanted to make a little money before I started my life. Personally, at my very best I would say I was a tad bit better than average. I was not a spectacular player and I was not a speedster by any means, but I thought I played intelligently at the collegiate level. I got in contact with my buddy, who had a black book with all of the sports agents’ information in it. I bought a fax machine and made a makeshift résumé titled, “Kansas Best Kept Secrets” and faxed it to every agent that I could in hopes of trying to get in contact with one. After I sent out the fax, I had agents calling me back and low and behold I hired one. I ended up signing with the Calgary Stampeders, a CFL team which cut me after two weeks. Once I left the Stampeders, my aspirations to play football disappeared because I was away from my wife and daughter for a long period of time. During the time of my CFL signing, the XFL was just beginning and I had some teams call me and say that they would draft me, but I told those teams, ‘No, I’m fine, I’m going to enter the work force.'”
Do you keep in touch with any teammates or coaches from your playing days?
“I keep in touch with many teammates of mine. Actually, a lot of the guys as well as the coaching staff are clients of mine (at Abram Brown Financial Consultants). I also keep in touch with my strength coach and we work out together on occasion.”
Has the college football game changed since you played over a dozen years ago?
“I think the game has changed since I played. The speed of the game has made a difference as well as the size of the players. However, I think the fundamentals of the game are the same. Truthfully, that is one of the main things I have taken away from playing sports in college and applied it toward my working career, the importance of sticking to the fundamentals and staying consistent in order to be successful.
As far as KU football goes, so much has changed from the stadium upgrades to all of the facilities and their renovations. It is fantastic to be a former player and see all of the renovations and advancements to the campus, and it puts a smile on my face every time I see it.”
Why did you choose to stay in the Lawrence after college and start your career?
“Lawrence turned out to be a fantastic place that I fell in love with. My wife and I enjoy living in Lawrence because it is laid back and is a college town, which allows me to get excited for every KU football season. It is also easier for me to attend the home football games. We have become extremely comfortable here and it has been a great place for my children to grow up in.”
Do your daughters play sports? If so are you involved in any of them?
“They both do and I started coaching them in basketball at a very young age. I also help them in track as well. I try to help them as much as I can in the sports that I have some knowledge in. I try to be as laid back as possible because I do not want to push them into playing a sport that they are not interested in. Right now they are at that age where participation is the main goal, but once the competitive ages roll around I will begin to be prepare them for their sport and make sure they are keeping up with the other athletes around them.”