AUSTIN, Texas -- Longhorns freshman defensive tackle Malcom Brown doesn’t like to consume himself with football.
“I don’t want to be obsessed with it,” he said. “I want to get on the field, do what I’ve got to do and get off the field.”
In fact he seldom watches the game if he’s not playing in it.
“I don’t watch no sports,” said the former Under Armour All-American from Brenham, Texas. “When I get home, I fix me a bowl of cereal, lay in bed and watch me some ‘Dragon Ball Z’ or something.”
As much as Brown likes to keep his personal life separate from football, he might find that more challenging now that he’s in Austin with some lofty expectations.
The Longhorns bring back three quality defensive tackles in Ashton Dorsey, Chris Whaley and Desmond Jackson, and added a mountain of a man in junior college transfer Brandon Moore (6-foot-5, 320 pounds).
Still, there’s not a person familiar with ‘Mancom,’ as he is known, that isn’t willing to wager that he’ll factor into the rotation this season.
“There is opportunity for him to play,” Texas senior All-American defensive end Alex Okafor said. “If he can come in and learn the playbook then he will be there. He definitely has a shot this year.”
The 6-foot-4, 315-pound Brown was the No. 2 defensive tackle and No. 12 overall prospect in 2012, which makes him the second highest-rated player in Texas’ incoming class behind Gatorade National Player of the Year Johnathan Gray.
Brown, a three-year starter, tallied 125 tackles, 66 tackles for loss, 91 quarterback hurries, 24 sacks, nine forced fumbles and four fumble recoveries in his prep career.
From the sounds of it, he practically intimidated an opposing running back into one of those forced fumbles.
“I remember one time we were playing Magnolia West and he called out the running back,” Brenham teammate and current Longhorns linebacker Tim Cole said. “[Brown] said, ‘Hey you! I’m gonna get you!’ And then, as soon as the play goes, he tackles him in the backfield for a loss. And he fumbled. It was ridiculous."
This is all coming from a guy who would rather watch cartoons than Monday Night Football, remember?
When Brown wasn’t bulldozing his way through offensive lines, he was showing off his light feet and reliable hands as a tight end. Ponder that for a second.
“Physically he is just a strong guy,” Okafor said. “He is very quick on his feet. He gets it so far. He is a great team guy, is pretty vocal and a great kid. Now let’s see if he can play.”
There seems to be little doubt about that. In fact, the addition of he and Moore are a big reason why the departure of Kheeston Randall isn’t one of the team's underlying concerns heading into fall camp. An All-Big 12 selection in 2011, Randall was key in Texas finishing as one of the nation’s best defenses last season.
“They are deep,” Okafor said of Texas’ defensive tackles. “We have five to six guys that are ready to go. We have the advantage of keeping guys fresh in the middle. Not many guys have the advantage of doing that.”
And only one team has the advantage of plugging Brown into the equation.