Rashaan Brown isn't old enough to drive. But the North Mecklenburg sophomore, 15, has already propelled his way into the spotlight of both the Viking football and basketball programs.
After starting for both North Meck JV teams last year, Brown worked tirelessly all summer on both the football field and on the basketball court to give himself an opportunity to make an impact on both squads.
Brown, 6-foot-3 and 200 pounds, is just starting to realize his potential as a wide receiver on the gridiron and a guard/forward on the hardwood.
"He really came into his own this summer during seven-on-sevens," said North Meck football coach Mike Bradley. "He really started to standout as a player. He looked like a potential star."
Brown's hard work has translated onto the football field this fall, as he had 30 receptions for 456 yards and three touchdowns in his first five games.
Brown had a breakout nine-catch, 170-yard game in a loss to Ardrey Kell before leading the Vikings to back-to-back wins over Myers Park and Lake Norman. Brown had three receptions for 70 yards and a touchdown against the Mustangs, before catching nine balls for 104 yards and a score in a 22-10 win over the Wildcats.
"I've been working really hard for a couple years now to get to this point," Brown said. "I'm a humble guy, and I'm not satisfied at all with what I have done. But I'm really not surprised at my success. This is just the beginning. I hope to get better and better every day."
Brown's improvement is only a matter of time, according to Bradley, who says the sophomore can be found working on his game on the football field or in the basketball gym almost all of the time.
Bradley said Brown has Division I size and potential in both of his sports, but that he's still "a puppy" who needs to continue to work on his game and in the weight room.
"He has really become a major weapon for our team," said Bradley, adding Brown is likely the only major D-I prospect on his current team. "He has big-play potential every time he touches the ball. Other teams know that, and they are already game-planning for him."
Brown's impact is making life easier for other players on the Vikings (3-3, 2-1 in the I-Meck).
Lake Norman walked a linebacker out of the box, to help double team Brown on both short and long passes. Bradley said that opened up things for both running backs - Garrison Dark, who had 116 yards rushing against the Wildcats, and Jalen McCullough, who added 61 yards rushing and a touchdown - as well as wideout Terrence Clyburn.
While Brown is not yet a vocal leader for his team, his actions sometimes speak louder than words.
"Players and coaches respect his ability," said Bradley. "He gets a lot of players involved with his big plays. He fires our team up a lot by what he can do."
Brown hopes to make the same impact on what will be a young North Meck basketball in a little over a month's time. Brown was the leading scorer on the JV team last year and along with fellow sophomore Johnny Piedmonte, led the Vikings to an 18-1 record and their third conference title in a row.
Brown, who moved up to the varsity team for the last few weeks of the season, hopes to help reload a team that lost two of its top three players in Clemson-bound forward Bernard Sullivan and Phillip Anglade, both of whom transferred to Davidson Day.
Whether it's football or basketball, Brown says his goal is always to be one of the best players.
"I try to be the best at what I'm doing, no matter what I am playing," said Brown. "I still have a long way to go. But I am going to keep working as hard as I possibly can to get where I want to go."