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La Salle’s powerback Sam Brown finds his next home—Rutgers

Written by: on Monday, May 31st, 2021. Follow Joseph Santoliquito on Twitter.


Sam Brown can feel settled now. The dynamic La Salle College High School junior tailback has his destination set—Rutgers.

Brown committed to Scarlet Knights’ coach Greg Schiano back in March, and he’ll be joined by another outstanding Philadelphia-area player in Neumann-Goretti linebacker Anthony Johnson in Piscataway, New Jersey, next fall.

Brown, the 6-foot-2, 205-pound tailback, will sign during the early signing period. He chose Rutgers over Virginia, Pitt, Cincinnati, Kentucky, Nebraska, and Michigan State. Penn State did not offer Brown.

“I visited Rutgers my sophomore year with my teammate, Abdul Carter, on an unofficial visit,” Brown said. “I loved it. I felt like I belonged there. I thought it would be the best fit for me academically and athletically. Committing early takes the stress off the recruiting process.

“I can focus on playing and enjoying my senior year. We didn’t get a chance to play the way we wanted last season, but at least we got the chance to play. We got some film and the campus is like an hour and an hour some change. But I was going to go to the school that was best for me and that was Rutgers.”

Brown’s best football appears to be ahead of him. He’s yet to completely full out, and his physical ability will only blossom once he gets into a college program.

Plus, Brown is a big, strong physical back that is made for the Big Ten. Brown provides power, speed and strength to run over or run by defenders. What makes him additionally special is his ability to catch the ball out of the backfield.

“Rutgers runs an offense that likes their backs to catch the ball,” Brown said. “I like what coach Schiano is doing and he’s really coming after players in this (Philadelphia) area. Coach Schiano is building something good at Rutgers.”

The only thing left for Brown and the rest of the seniors-to-be at La Salle is to take down their rival, St. Joe’s Prep, this coming season. It’s something the La Salle senior class of 2022 has yet to do.

“We know that, and that’s the plan to change it,” Brown said.

Explorers coach John Steinmetz said Rutgers is a perfect fit for Brown.

“Sam is only going to get better and he’s going to grow into a man pretty quickly when he’s able to get into a weight room full time,” Steinmetz said. “I don’t know Rutgers’ depth chart well enough, but I know Sam is a very good talent.

“The lights are never too bright for Sam. He’s very humble and he has a great smile. You wouldn’t know it if Sam rushed for 270 yards and three touchdowns. He’s the same way. He is a Big Ten back and Coach Schiano recruited Sam hard, making a couple of trips to La Salle.

“But I maintain once Sam is able to get full-time into a weight room, watch out. He’s going to explode.”

Joseph Santoliquito is an award-winning sportswriter who has been covering high school football since 1992 and is the president of the Boxing Writers Association of America. He can be followed on Twitter @JSantoliquito. Follow on Twitter @EPAFootball.

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