Sam Brown takes a snap during a game this season. Photo by Chandler Hart.
DEVIN ABELL | STAFF REPORTER| email@example.com
Sam Brown’s passion for football began at six years old, before he was even able to take the field. After watching his older brother play, Brown was ready to take up the game, but hit an early snag.
“I had to wait an extra year to play because I was too young,” Brown said. “So I learned the game by watching him.”
Brown was a quarterback as soon as he stepped on the field, from childhood all the way to Gonzaga College High School in Maryland. The redshirt sophomore is now the starting quarterback for Butler football.
During his freshman year of high school, Brown got a chance to start on varsity for four games after the starting quarterback went down with an injury. However during his sophomore year, the original starter returned, leaving Brown to ride the pine and not see time on varsity.
“It really makes you appreciate the opportunities you get,” Brown said. “I don’t take those for granted with this game.”
In due time, Brown took over as a starter his junior year and began to take off. He won two District of Columbia State Athletic Association State Championships and was named 1st-team All-State during his time on varsity.
In between his junior and senior years, Brown began looking to play at the collegiate level.
“I started to get D-II offers and visits from coaches,” Brown said. “I also started going to camps during the spring and summer and began to draw interest.”
Butler University was one team that began to look at Brown during the spring of his junior year.
“After the second visit, I fell in love with the university and knew this was where I wanted to be,” Brown said.
Brown committed to Butler in the spring and began his collegiate career in the summer of 2017.
Upon arriving for summer camp, Brown met the current starter at the time — then-redshirt junior Will Marty.
At that point, Marty was entering his second season as quarterback and was in the midst of becoming the face of Butler football. He would go on to earn Academic All-PFL Second Team honors his junior year, and be named to the First Team Academic All-PFL and team captain in his senior year.
During summer camp, Marty took notice of Brown right away because of the skills and work ethic he demonstrated.
“He came in right away and put his head down and went to work,” Marty said. “He’s a natural and picks things up quickly. He’s not afraid to ask questions and is willing to give feedback.”
Going forward, Marty took Brown under his wing, and they would go on to form a bond throughout their time together.
Marty took the time to get to know Brown personally, as more than just a teammate. From rooming together on away games to spending time together outside of practice, Brown and Marty’s friendship continued to grow.
“He was someone I could always come to for advice,” Brown said. “Whether it was life or football, he was there for me.”
Marty would go on to teach Brown the ins and outs of offense over the years, helping him hone his skills for the role he now possesses.
Brown has played in three out of the four games this season as quarterback. He’s thrown for 527 yards and two touchdowns in those games. His best performance came against Indian Wesleyan, where he threw for 251 yards and two TD’s, while adding on 46 rushing yards on nine carries.
However, their relationship did not end with Marty’s graduation this past year. It remains strong even during the season in the form of pregame pointers and quarterback dinners.
“He still texts me before every game giving me advice,” Brown said. “He had me and the other quarterbacks over for dinner the other week. He still cares about the team and is always there if we need him.”
While the duo no longer shares hotel rooms on road trips, the bond remains strong, and their friendship continues beyond their time together at Butler.