Coaches and family witnessed the signing of Starkville's Brittany Brown, seated middle, with Itawamba Community College Wednesday morning. (Photo by Lee Adams, For Starkville Daily News)
Brittany Brown may have been flying under the radar early in her basketball career with the Starkville High School Lady Yellowjackets.
It didn't take that long for Itawamba Community College to identify Brown's skills.
While attending a camp on the ICC campus in Fulton, the coaching staff saw what Brown was capable of doing.
The Lady Indians kept their eye on Brown from that point and signed her to a scholarship Wednesday morning at SHS.
"She is a silent player and plays hard," ICC assistant coach Robin Porter said. "She can be aggressive when she wants, but you just have to jump on her. When she comes up here, we can develop her, help her play even harder and the way we'd love her to play."
Porter remembers when Brown came to camp with Lady Jacket teammate Shay Bonner and coach Kristie Williams.
Bonner has completed her two years with the Lady Indians and Brown was thankful to have that connection.
"She kept me informed about the program and how things were around the campus," Brown said. "We're close. With her keeping in touch with me, that made me want to go more. With her leaving, it's like me following in her footsteps."
Williams has watched as Brown has grown and matured the last couple of seasons at SHS.
Even though the next level at ICC will be an adjustment for Brown, Williams believes she can do it.
"The intensity of how hard she is going to have to work to get better is going to be her biggest obstacle," Williams said. "When you go to college, there's always a group that's exactly like you and those growing to be exactly like you. That makes that competition a little bit tougher.
"Brittany Brown has excelled at getting better. She's going to get better with the help of coach (Nanci) Gray and coach Porter."
Brown was able to adjust with the Lady Jackets and now will have that same opportunity with the Lady Indians.
Williams called Brown "a driving force" for her program the last couple of years and said she will be missed.
"This past year as a senior, she's been one of our leaders as far as scoring, defense and helping our younger players adjust to the varsity level," Williams said. "(Two season ago) We had seniors and she didn't want to step on any toes, but I told her her job was to do her very best no matter what. She's finally understood what all of that means."
Two of the things that attracted Brown to the Lady Indians was the campus and success of the program.
As far as playing time, Brown knows it's going to be a reward for hard work.
"Coach Porter told me that playing time is based on how I make it," Brown said. "If I come in and go through the motions, I wouldn't get as much, but if I come in and bust my butt and basically play a lot of defense, the team will do great."
Porter said ICC is trying to build off winning the MACJC State Championship and reaching the Region 23 finals last season.
With the signing of a player like Brown, Porter believes the team remains in a position to reach those types of goals.
"We're trying to build off that and we feel like Brittany will be a great asset to the program for next year and hopefully we can repeat," Porter said. "She has that mentality of wanting to win."
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