Gary Brown has been a solid Gator commitment ever since he went public a couple of months back but the more time he spends on the University of Florida campus, the happier he is with his choice. Recently the 6-4, 285-pound defensive tackle from Greensboro West Gadsden spent three days in Gainesville at Urban Meyer’s Elite Lineman Camp. Even an almost forgettable bout with what he called “full body cramps” turned into a positive experience.
Brown was in the last part of day two of camp when his body basically ran out of fluids. He had been loading up on water and Gatorade but apparently his body demanded more. What happened next was pain on a level far beyond anything he could imagine.
“It was a first for me, but I knew I would make it through it alright,” he said. “It wasn’t really full body, it started in my legs, went to my stomach and then my arms. Besides that, everything was alright.”
Florida’s training staff was quick to take charge of the situation. Every precaution was taken including calling for an ambulance, which took him away to Shands where the care was swift and flawless. It left Brown with the impression that nothing is spared when it comes to caring for Florida football players.
“I felt great … it felt like I was getting all this special attention,” he said. “I felt like I could have broken a fingernail and somebody would have been there to fix it.”
Even with the visit to the hospital, Brown was impressed by his three days on the Florida campus. He learned plenty from the football staff and he had a chance to learn more about a campus that will be his future home. This won’t be his last trip to Gainesville.
“I loved the camp,” he said. “To tell you the truth, any time I can get down to Florida and participate in any activities, it is a great experience for me. Every time I go to Florida I always learn something new. I watch what the other guys are doing and I always try to learn how to make my game better.”
His next trip will be in a couple of weeks for Friday Night Lights when the Gators play host to some of the top high school prospects in the country. Brown plans to spend part of his time at the camp in the ear of some of those prospects, extolling the virtues of the Florida Gators.
“I am planning on being at Friday Night Lights,” Brown said. “[The coaches] don’t tell me to, but I am already helping recruit guys by myself.”
Brown wants the Gators to bring in the best possible recruiting class because his goal is to win college football’s ultimate prize.
“I love to be a part of a strong recruiting class,” he said. “It means there is a great opportunity to win a National Championship.”
Another appeal of Friday Night Lights is that he will get a chance to get in some more work with Florida defensive line coach Dan McCarney. Brown already got a good taste of McCarney’s coaching at the Elite Lineman Camp, but he can’t wait to learn more.
“Coach really gets after it,” Brown said of McCarney. “I like his attitude about things. I love the idea that he is going to be my coach for the next four years.”
When Brown committed to the Gators, some of the message board jockeys at a coupe of FSU sites said this was a temporary aberration since Greensboro is almost in FSU’s back yard. He admits that some FSU commitments are trying to get in his ear and sway him, but he says they’re wasting their time.
“To tell you the truth I don’t even pay attention to it,” he said.
He just keeps making trips to Gainesville so he can learn from the best.