By Griffin Conway
Local athletic sensation, Noah Brown of Flanders, a wide receiver from the Ohio State University, has declared for the 2017 NFL draft.
Brown, former student at Mountain View Elementary School and Mt. Olive Middle School before attending the private Pope John XXIII Regional High School in Sparta, came out with the announcement on Twitter, Sat., Jan. 7. He first let his college coaches know about his decision through personal phone calls, and then came his tweet, which gained radical attention from his friends and fans earning 840 retweets, 2,900 likes and 226 responses.
In a farewell to college football, Brown told his followers: “First and foremost I want to thank my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ for the many blessings he has put in my life. Throughout my 3 years at Ohio State God put some of the most amazing people in my life and taught me many lessons that I will never forget and will use going forward in my journey. I want to thank everyone at the Ohio State University and Buckeye Nation for the best experience I could ever ask for.”
In his junior year at college at the age of 21, Brown’s decision to take a break from his education and make a play for the NFL was not an easy one. He had consulted his family prior to making the final decision.
Noah’s mother, Ally Brown of Flanders, says “delaying his education at this time was a tough decision. Noah has always been a hard worker and a gifted athlete. Being a student-athlete at the Ohio State University is up to this point his highest and most proud athletic and academic achievement.”
She concludes that understanding his injury in August 2015 prior to this past college football season was a key factor in finalizing his decision.
“His dreams seemed out of reach while he underwent two major surgeries in a span of three months,” Ally says. “Going through something like that reminds us that tomorrow isn’t promised. The fire to succeed and excel still burns within him. He wants to work even harder to earn a chance to realize his dreams.”
As far as completing his schooling, “The opportunity for his education has only been delayed; he intends to finish his degree,” says Ally.
Brown, who has been playing the game of football since he was five years old, had grown up playing running back. His favorite football players growing up were Jerry Rice and Tiki Barber, he says.
He had switched to a wide receiver in high school, and kept that position at Ohio State sporting jersey #80.
As no stranger to the world of athletes, prior to accepting a football scholarship at Ohio State, Brown had a full ride to play college basketball at Rider University in Lawrenceville.
“I chose football over basketball because I thought it had the potential to take me further in life,” Brown says.
“My proudest accomplishment of [my] college career was winning the national championship in 2014,” says Brown. During his freshman year, the Ohio State Buckeyes- won 42-20 against the University of Oregon Ducks, in the NCAA playoff championship game on Jan. 12, at the Cowboys Stadium in Dallas, TX.
At Ohio State on Sat., Sept. 17, 2016, Brown emerged to the scene of an NFL prospect after he notched a four touchdown game on the road against a #14 ranked Oklahoma side. On one of his scores, he had caught the ball around another player and pinned it to his back, proceeding to fall into the corner of the end zone for a touchdown.
This highlight gained worldwide attention on ESPN, and according to a tweet from Skip Bayless from Fox Sports 1, “Ohio State’s Noah Brown is going to make an NFL team very happy.”
In the aftermath of an eye catching season, Brown wrapped up his announcement on twitter and added, “However after much thought, prayer, and conversation with my loved ones, I have decided it is time for me to move on to the next level and chase my dreams. I have decided to forgo my remaining years of eligibility and will be declaring for the 2017 NFL draft!”
Brown adds, “thank you to the Mt. Olive community and everyone who has had a positive impact on my life thus far. I hope to continue to make you proud and represent well!”
His friends and family are so excited to see where he lands.
“I would like him to be drafted to the team that can best utilize his skill set and where he will be happiest,” says Ally.
His mom has enjoyed “everything,” when it comes to watching him play. “I am truly his biggest and most rowdy fan.”
Brown is currently at Tom Shaw Camp in Orlando, Fla., where he will be training until the draft. He is training for the NFL combine which is set for the end of February; Pro Day at OSU in March; and the NFL draft in Philadelphia in May.
He concludes with some advice for kids looking to pursue their dreams.
“I would tell them to always work as hard as you possibly can because until you push yourself to what you thought was your limit you will never see how far you can actually go and what you can achieve.”