Before he played for Team Loaded’s 16-and-under travel basketball team last summer, Kobe Brown said he unsure how good he was.
Brown, a 6-foot-7, 220-pound sophomore forward from Lee (Ala.) High, played on a team of rising juniors, players a year ahead of him, and he was impressive. Brown begain receiving college scholarship offers because of his play, and they’ve continued since the season ended in July.
He received his 25th offer, from Tennessee, on Wednesday after playing his first game with his high school team, Lee High from Huntsville, Ala., at the Hoodies House national holiday tournament at Providence Day.
“I don’t think any of this has really hit me yet,” said Brown, ranked No. 41 nationally in the class of 2019 by 247 Sports. He’s the No. 13 recruit at small forward and the No. 2 recruit in Alabama. “I didn’t know I was that good, to be honest.
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“But it was playing the summer with Team Loaded that changed things for me,” Brown said of the N.C./Virginia-based organization that also produced NBA star Andrew Wiggins, Kentucky’s Bam Adebayo and N.C. State’s Dennis Smith. “ Now, people treat me different and I get way more cameras and tape recorders than I used to. But I have to stay humble and not let it get to my head.”
In three games at the Hoodies House, Brown averaged 17.3 points, 6.3 rebounds, 3.3 assists. He had 16 points, five rebounds, four assists and two steals in the Generals’ 71-45 win against Asheville Christian Friday in the seventh-place game.
Brown, whose offers include Auburn, Kansas, Ohio State and Virginia Tech, has played all five positions, including point guard. He played a significant role on a Generals team that reached the state championship game his freshman year, and he’s playing an even larger role this season on a 11-man team that returns three players with varsity experience.
Brown, 16, averages 21 points, nine rebounds and seven assists.
“Last year, we made states, but we lost four kids (to graduation), two playing (Division I) basketball and two D2s (Division II),” said Lee High coach Greg Brown. “We had a good team. Next year, I’ll get back most of the guys I have now. So I’m excited about next year, but I want to finish strong this year.”
Greg Brown is Kobe Brown’s father. Like his son, he also played at Lee High, and he’s coached at the school for 15 years. Kobe grew up playing basketball and watching his father coach.
“Kobe grew up with a ball in his hands,” Greg Brown said. “He’s always loved being in the huddle when he was growing up.”
Now, Greg Brown is watching his son become the center of attention.
“For a while it surprised me,” Greg Brown said. “But as he began the season, with some of the games he’s had, I’m not shocked at the attention he’s getting now. He takes it all in stride and doesn’t get into it too much.
“I mean, he’s got those (25) offers, but I’m not sure he could name those (schools) right now. All in all, I’d say he’s doing pretty well.”
Wertz: 704-358-5133; Twitter: @langstonwertzjr