Friday Night Hero: Carson’s Jacorian Brown

Published 12:00 am Thursday, October 1, 2009

By Bret Strelow
CHINA GROVE ó Jacorian Brown walked to midfield as a Carson captain prior to the opening kickoff against J.M. Robinson.
The honor generated excitement near the end of a nerve-wracking week.
Injuries forced Brown to fill in at defensive end, and he performed well in a 42-12 rout. He then amassed 13 tackles, including 11 first-half stops, in the Cougars’ 40-14 victory against Statesville last Friday.
Primarily a fullback the first four weeks of the season, Brown started practicing at end three days before the Robinson game.
“I was concerned trying to play my spots because I never want to mess up,” Brown said. “The coaches expect a lot from me, so I have to make sure I do my job so the team can get better.
“It was funny because I kept messing up, but during the game I did pretty good I guess. I was so hyped before the game, and that game they made me captain. Whenever you’re captain, everybody looks to you to be a team leader. I guess I tried to pick it up for them.”
Brown hasn’t disappointed his teammates or coaches.
A 5-foot-10, 190-pound junior, he helped the Cougars establish a 21-0 lead in the first half against the Greyhounds.
Carson, which lost its final six NPC contests in 2008, is currently tied with West Rowan and East Rowan for first place at 1-0.
“Jacorian’s presence on defense has been unbelievable,” Carson head coach Mark Woody said. “We thought he’d do OK, but he’s really taken to it as a natural.”
Carson pulled ahead 33-7 early in the fourth quarter against Statesville, and the margin allowed star tailback Shaun Warren to take a break after he had gained 250 yards on 33 carries. Clifford Long, a fullback/tailback whose workload has increased with Brown’s defensive emergence, rushed 10 times for 82 yards.
Brown even returned to his old position and picked up 51 yards on six runs. He scored a touchdown with 2:30 left.
“We platoon, but I told my coaches if we ever had a kid that’d make a difference that he’d play both sides,” Woody said. “I think he’s made a difference.
“Right now he’s a defensive player, but he knows if we need him on offense, he’s ready to go.”
Brown said he admires classmates Ryan Shoaf and Garrett Smith, both defensive linemen, because of how hard they hit him on practice runs two years ago.
Brown had two 100-yard outings as a sophomore, and he rushed for a combined 97 yards on 15 carries as Carson split its first four games this year.
He often had practiced at linebacker with the Cougars, but the injuries to Shoaf (concussion, shoulder) and Joseph Basinger (knee) facilitated the switch to defensive end.
“At first a lot of teaching took place, and he got a little frustrated the first couple of days, but he figured it out and is doing pretty good,” Carson assistant Travis Billings said. “He was real nervous before the Robinson game and almost got so jacked up he got tired during the game. He got winded because he was playing so hard.”
That type of effort against Statesville led to a personal foul that Woody and Billings were willing to tolerate.
Brown worked his way into the backfield on a counter play but was out of position as Keyon Harris rolled forward for a big gain.
Brown tracked down Harris from behind and made a stop roughly 20 yards beyond the line of scrimmage. A flag flew for a late hit out of bounds.
“I was so hyped up,” Brown said, “I couldn’t stop myself.”