America is a sucker for a Cindrella story. Watching unknown people fight their way to the top and succeed is the American way, after all.
Brown grew up in Utah, where he excelled in baseball, basketball, and football. Though he was offered a football scholarship to BYU, he decided that basketball was his game, and chose instead to play hoops for a small, private local school, Westminster College.
After three years playing college basketball, Brown took an internship at a Utah accounting firm. When he received an offer to work full-time with the company, knowing the NBA wasn’t in his future, Brown dropped out of school and joined the working world.
He was soon transferred to the firm’s Florida offices, but less than a year later, thought he should return to school; that’s just what he did.
Meanwhile, Brown’s younger brother, Braden, was playing football for BYU. Brown began helping his brother train for the upcoming draft, and in doing so, caught the eye of a Cougar athletic trainer by the name of Chad Ikei, who convinced Brown that he would make a heck of a tight end.
Ikea was persistent, convinced that Brown would make an excellent tight end, and eventually convinced Brown to move to Hawaii to train with 11 other NFL hopefuls for three months of intensive workouts.
On March 29, Brown returned to Utah–this time to participate in BYU’s pro day.
Knowing he was a “no body,” Brown knew that he had to put on a show.
And that’s exactly what he did. Browned turned in the best vertical jump (39″), broad jump (10′ 3″) , and 40 time (4.43) of any of the other pro day participants.
In the end, it was the Miami Dolphins that signed Brown to a 3 year contract.
This Monday, as the Dolphins host their spring mini-camp, Brown will be competing for a tight end spot on Miami’s 53-man roster.
Les Brown’s story is one of the many things that make sports so great. There is nothing like cheering for the underdog, and as Brown fights to earn a place in the NFL, he will have the support and cheers of NFL fans across the country.
You can read more about Les Brown’s unusual journey in The Salt Lake Tribune.