Before you saw him in a maroon and white uniform, Mississippi State wide receiver Fred Brown could be found making a stellar play on the practice field at Jim Hill High School or catching a touchdown pass under the lights of Hughes Field on Friday nights.
However, going back even further, his talent and love for the game began in the heart of west Jackson.
Brown discussed his childhood experiences of playing football, transitioning from high school to college athlete and working on his goals at his position and ultimate goal in life.
1. Fred, you are native of Jackson, Mississippi. How long have you been playing football and or when did you first start playing football?
Fred: I have been playing organized football since I was eight years old. I first started playing football for the West Jackson Panthers & Falcons Flag Football
2. What made you begin football and who or what grew your interest for the sport? Has it always been a dream for you to play football?
Fred: I always loved the game of football since I was little, watching it on television and playing the sport. It has been a dream of mine to play football and play in the NFL since I was 10 years old.
3. What middle school did you attend? Did you play football in middle school?
Fred: I went to Siwell Middle School where I played basketball for the most of the time I was there. I did not begin playing football until my eighth grade year.
4. When you played in middle school or growing up, what position did you play?
Fred: I played wide receiver, quarterback and linebacker positions.
5. What was one of your favorite childhood sports memories particularly you playing sports? Has it motivated you to where you are as an athlete now and where you would like to go?
Fred: One of my favorite childhood sports memories came while playing for the Jackson Panthers. This experience helped me to build character and passion for the game.
6. Are there any family members who played a role or impact on your growth as an athlete or football player?
Fred: My mom and dad have been very instrumental in my growth as an athlete.
7. You attended Jim Hill High School where you made a huge impact playing wide receiver. How was the experience playing at the wide receiver position and serving as a major deep threat during your time at Jim Hill? What did you learn the most from playing here?
Fred: Despite us losing more games than we won, I thought we had a good team. I had some great seasons at Jim Hill where I received a lot of recognition for my play.
8. Continuing with questions from your time at Jim Hill, what did Coach Henry Blount, Greg Jennings and Jeffrey Moore stress to you that helped you grow as a player?
Fred: They helped me grow as a person by leading me in the right direction and helping me reach my potential.
9. You chose to attend Mississippi State University to continue your dream of playing football. Ultimately, what made you decide to attend MSU? Did they offer you a full or partial athletic scholarship?
Fred: I chose Mississippi State because of the atmosphere and the bond with players that played here. It felt like the right place to be.
10. What were your initial thoughts on attending MSU? Going into your first year and completing it, what was the hardest thing in the transition process from high school to college? What did you learn from it?
Fred: The hardest things I had to deal with were learning how to practice and playing with relentless effort on every single play.
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11. In 2013, according to ESPN.com, you recorded five receptions and 74 yards and in 2014, you finished with18 receptions, 299 yards and two touchdowns. Discuss the growth and impact you made in just a year difference. What did you do different from 2013 to 2014?
Fred: I just grew as a player on the field and off by working hard, trying to reach my potential everyday I came to practice, playing with relentless effort and trying to get better at something new everyday.
12. Coming off a season where the Bulldogs finished 10-2 in the season before losing to Georgia Tech in the Capitol One Orange Bowl and you finishing seventh in receiving yards on a wide receiving corp with much depth, what are your biggest goals as an individual and for the team?
Fred: It is my goal to just keep working hard and grinding to get better each day.
13. What did you learn the most from last season and more specifically the lost in the bowl game against Georgia Tech?
Fred: Let’s have even a better season next year.
14. How much of an impact has quarterback Dak Prescott had on you as a player?
Fred: Dak is our team leader. He gets us going and he brings out the best in us. He also brings a lot of energy with him every single day.
15. I know you and other wide receivers are competing for playing time on the field. Beyond that, what is your relationship with them? Do you all motivate and help each other daily to be better athletes?
Fred: We all feed off each other. We push each other each and everyday to be the best wide receivers in the SEC. We all are different, talented wide outs.
16. As an athlete, do you pay close attention to NFL wide receivers and their techniques and skill sets?
Fred: Yes, I watch team and individual player workouts. I take drills and moves from them.
17. Do you plan to play at the next level after your final season at Mississippi State?
Fred: Yes, it is my dream to play in the NFL.
Getting to know Fred Brown
Hometown: Jackson, Mississippi
Position: Wide Receiver
Fun Fact: I’m a sneaker head . I like to buy a lot of shoes.
Life Motto: The Bigger The Dream, The Harder The Grind
Favorite Athlete: Chad Johnson/ Antonio Brown
Favorite Team: Panthers/ Patriots