If you're going to build a recruiting pipeline, Tucker High School outside of Atlanta isn't a bad place to do it.
UCF signed two players from the school - A.J. Bouye and Jonathan Davis - in this past recruiting class. And Wednesday they added perhaps their best commitment yet in Quenton Brown, a Class of 2010 defensive end.
Always one of the dominant forces in Georgia high school football, Tucker is coming off a 2008 state championship and enters the preseason as the No. 1 ranked team in Class AAAA.
Brown had offers from countless schools, including Michigan State, Miami, Ole Miss, Western Kentucky, Illinois and West Virginia. He had narrowed his options to UCF and Michigan State before settling in on a decision.
"It pretty much came down to my family situation," Brown said. "UCF is a better place for me. The main reason is my family-- my mother and my brother. It's closer for them. I'm actually from Michigan and still have family there, so that's why I was considering Michigan State. I have family in Florida too and it's closer for my mother to catch a ride down there to see my games as opposed to flying to Michigan.
"One of my best friends (Bouye) committed there and after signing day UCF offered me. Ever since then it's been almost like a father-son relationship with Coach David Kelly, my recruiting coach."
Kelly coaches wide receivers and recruits Atlanta, Miami and other key areas for UCF.
"We would talk pretty often," Brown said. "Coach Kelly is just down to earth. He lets you know things straight up. He was like a family friend. He was cool with everybody."
He committed to both Kelly and head coach George O'Leary Wednesday evening.
"I told my head coach (I wanted to commit) so we set up like a phone conference," Brown said. "I talked to Coach Kelly first. He was like, 'Thank you, you've really made me happy. I'm running off to Coach's office right now to tell him the news.' He was congratulating me on joining the team.
"Coach O'Leary was like, 'There comes a time to make a big decision and it seems like you made the right one for you and your family and I want to congratulate you.'"
It also didn't hurt that Brown would be rejoining his high school teammates. He's been friends with Bouye since he was eight years old.
"A.J. wasn't exactly trying to recruit me there, but he was leading me there with little inside jokes about going to his school and still being teammates," Brown said. "His main thing to me was just go where you're happy."
It turns out UCF made both players happy.
"I called to tell A.J. (of the commitment) and he laughed about it and said, 'Now we're going to be roommates.'"
Brown said he's visited UCF three times in the past year with the most recent trip occuring in June. He accompanied Bouye and Davis when they reported to campus to begin summer school classes.
"The main thing about UCF is that I really love the city it's in, Orlando, and I like the coaches," Brown said. "That was two plusses right off the bat."
UCF is recruiting Brown to play defensive end, though he also plays tight end and wide receiver at Tucker.
"One of the reasons they offered me is they said I have a lot of agility, speed and a good mental concept from a defensive end's perspective," Brown said. "That something that all defensive ends may not have. They said if they added a little bit of strength and college knowledge to it, they can make me a superstar player."
As a junior, Brown recorded 65 tackles and nine sacks.
"My best strength at defensive end is probably chasing down plays and rushing the passer," Brown said. "Most of my highlight tape is sacks, catching somebody from behind or being on the backside of a play but still making the play."
Brown expects to make an early contribution on UCF's defensive line.
"I've already talked to Coach (Jim) Panagos about it, Coach O'Leary, Coach (Geoff) Collins and pretty much the whole staff," Brown said. "I want to come in and do big things. My main two goals are to get stronger and on the college strength level, then at the same time learn the playbook. If I learn the playbook and I'm as strong as anybody else out there, so I'm prepared, then there's no reason why I shouldn't be playing."
He said playing college football has always been a goal.
"I was probably in sixth or seventh grade and I used to love the Steelers," Brown said. "I always said I wanted to go pro, whether it be the NBA or NFL. In sixth grade I didn't know what was my best sport, but around eighth grade I realized football was my best sport. I drove myself to be the best on whatever team I played on. It turned out that people started to notice I was a good football player. I started getting college scholarship ofers and now I get to go to college for free."
Brown, who will return to UCF a little more than week from now to attend the season opening game against Samford, says he's done with recruiting now that he's made a commitment.
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