Lost in the Penn State football linebacker shuffle of Micah Parsons freshman season and Jan Johnson’s breakout, was a solid player in junior Cameron Brown.
Many unknowns were strewn across the Penn State football defense this year. Senior leaders were gone from a year ago and a linebacking corp that was productive needed new blood to step up. A few players stepped up and got a lot of attention, but one that didn’t get his deserved spotlight was junior Cameron Brown.
After two years where he played significant time in the rotation, he got his chance to start at the outside backer spot in the 2018 season. Brown did the preseason prep work for sure, adding 13 more pounds to his frame, making him a 6-foot-5, 233-pound, versatile backer. He covered a lot of ground against the run, got out in space to cover and even rushed the quarterback when the team needed him to.
He proved to be a quality linebacker in every aspect. He had a strong level of production nearly doubling his career tackle number with 60 stops in year one as a starter. Although the tackle numbers are not super high for any of the linebackers in the PSU defense anymore, because of the multiple rotations, he still managed to made a number of plays.
Through the air, he broke up six passes, separating the receiver from the ball with jarring hits. In addition, he recorded 6.5 tackles for loss, blowing up running backs behind the line of scrimmage for losses. He’s a rangy, athletic, productive front-seven player for a defense that needed a solid player.
Some young stars stepped up to the challenge of replacing depth across the defense, but It was also good for the newcomers to follow an experienced player’s example. No doubt, Brown, one was one of the guys to show them how to succeed in Penn State’s defense. As one of the four players with at least 60-plus tackles, he has successfully made the transition from partial contributor to starting linebacker for the Nittany Lions.
SEASON STATS: 60 total tackles, 6.5 tackles for loss, 2.0 sacks, six passes defended, three forced fumbles.
CAREER STATS: 123 total tackles, 9.0 tackles for loss, 2.5 sacks, seven passes defended, three forced fumbles.