Macalester College, here he comes.
After starring on Eastside Catholic’s offensive line for the past four years, Redmond resident Kevin Brown — all 6-foot-3 and 250 pounds of him — will take his football talent to the intimate Division III St. Paul, Minnesota campus in August.
Brown, who helped lead the Crusaders to a pair of 3A state titles, graduated on June 3 at Benaroya Hall in Seattle, and now he’ll focus on staying in shape with his workout regimen this summer before heading to Macalester.
“I’m very excited, real nervous, too. It’ll be nice to live in a whole new part of the country,” said Brown, a two-time all-Metro League first-team selection at tackle.
His mom received an email from one of the Macalester coaches and they checked out the campus in April of 2018. He visited a lot of other schools, and “I just fell in love with the campus, it was beautiful. Coaches were awesome,” he said.
Head coach Tony Jennison leads a hard-working group of coaches and players, said Brown, who likes the cold weather that Minnesota will bring and he’ll focus on mathematics in the warmth of the classroom.
Jennison said if Brown stays strong, he could be a starter in the fall: “I’ll play anywhere, as long as it gets me playing time. I’m not picky. I’ll do anything to help the team,” Brown said.
Brown began playing football six years ago for the Eastside Catholic junior program. He was homeschooled until seventh grade and then entered Eastside Catholic the next year. His family has lived in the same Redmond house for 25 years.
While at Eastside Catholic, he played on state championship squads his freshman and senior years. Hoisting the title trophy made all the tough two-a-day practices in the summer worthwhile, Brown said.
Last November, the Crusaders beat O’Dea, 31-13, for the title, and then traveled to Peoria, Arizona for the Geico Bowl against host Centennial, also a state champion. Eastside Catholic triumphed, 17-0.
Brown described the trip and game as an “amazing experience with the team and it was nice to go out, sort of riding off into the sunset” with the victory alongside head coach Jeremy Thielbahr in his last season at the helm.
“Obviously, it was a lot of hard work. Coach T, he really pushed us hard to not only be excellent football players, but excellent people,” Brown said. “Life is bigger than just a football game, so (he) wanted to really work on advancing us as men in the world.”
The Reporter asked Brown a series of questions for a behind-the-scenes glimpse into his life:
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?
(Via former Eastside Catholic offensive line coach and new Crusaders head coach, Dom Daste) He always tells us to stop complaining, and just roll up your sleeves and get the work done. That applies to a lot of different areas in life, whether it’s football or school or work.
What’s your favorite restaurant in the Redmond area?
As much as I love hitting up McDonald’s after a workout, I like JJ Mahoney’s down by Bella Bottega, it’s an awesome place.
What’s your biggest pet peeve?
I’m not a big fan of people touching me when I don’t wanna be touched. Other people tapping my shoulder or hugging me when I don’t wanna be hugged.
Except after a big win and you’re gonna hoist the trophy, then maybe that will be OK.
There’s a few exceptions (laughs).
What’s your dream vacation spot?
It was Hawaii. I’d never been there before, but this past spring I was taken down by a couple friends and I had a blast down there. Now, probably, France. I had only been there when I was super young. I just love European culture and it would be fun to see the Eiffel Tower and Notre Dame.
If you could go to dinner with one person, who would that be?
Chris Pratt, he’s from the area (Lake Stevens), he seems like a great guy. So I think it would be fun to meet him and sort of get to know him.
What special skill would you like to learn?
I’ve always wanted to learn how to juggle. That and hula hoop are the two things I’ve tried to do, but I just could never get it down.
What if you could do the hula hoop while juggling?
Oh, there you go, that would probably trump just juggling or just hula hooping, yeah (laughs).
What’s your favorite movie of all time?
“The Lion King,” that just has a special nostalgia, it’s a great movie.
What’s your personal motto?
My grandpa died when I was pretty young, he was known for his little quotes. One thing he would always say to my mom would be, “If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all.”