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Face of the Game – Justin Brown

Coaches across Texas High athletics choose standout players from the season
Kailyn Williams
Junior Justin Brown drives the paint in a pre-season practice scrimmage. Brown was selected to be recognized as the 2023-2024 basketball pre-season Face of the Game.

Most athletes live for the big moments: the screaming crowd and excited fans, the shining lights and packed-out gyms. They want the spotlight. However, the athletes that coaches dream of having on their team care about practicing in an empty gym just as much as playing in front of a sold out one.

Dedication is not easy to coach, but the character trait lives in junior point guard Justin Brown. 

“Justin is the type of kid that will text me on his off day trying to get in the gym and get some shots up,” Head Coach Eric Cross said. “He’s always on the go, he’s always in the gym trying to get better. 

Brown is new on the scene of Texas High athletics, and is working everyday to prove himself, not only amongst the program, but at home as well.

“I think what is keeping me motivated is really my family,” Brown said. “They have done so much for me to be where I am today, so I work my hardest to perform for not just my team, but my family as well.”

Accompanying his work ethic, is a sense of selflessness on the court. Brown puts his team’s needs above those of his own. 

“Justin is like one of those glue players. He’s always about the team, he’s never about himself,” Cross said. “He brings the team together because he is so selfless.”

Having players with the ability to be selfless makes the job of coaching a little bit easier. 

“My favorite thing about coaching Justin is that he’s not out there counting minutes or points. He’s willing to do whatever we need him to do from a night-to-night basis,” Cross said. “Sometimes it’s scoring, sometimes it’s passing and sometimes it’s guarding the opposing team’s best player. Whatever it takes, he’s always up for it. It makes things easier for us coaches and we wish we could have a bunch of players like that.”

Dedication comes with its own hardships. Every sport demands mental toughness alongside physical toughness. 

“My parents help me stay mentally tough,” Brown said. “They used to get on me a lot to prepare me for what I would get from a coach, so now I can take the tough coaches and tough situations and still keep my composure.”

Not only is he an exemplary player to coach, but Brown makes it a point to be a good teammate, as well. 

“Justin, that’s my brother, man,” junior guard Trevon Ellis said. “He works hard everyday, he’s fun to be around. He’s what anyone would want in a teammate.”

Starting at such a young age, Brown found a love for the game that drives him to success everyday.

“I play basketball because this was really my first love. My first baby picture I had a ball in my hand. I’ve always been a hooper,” Brown said. “I knew from a young age that this was what I wanted to do, so I just kept working to improve.”

Basketball impacts Brown more than just athletically, it builds him to be a better person, as well. 

“This sport is teaching me life skills everyday,” Brown said. “It gives me discipline, communication and leadership skills. It has shown me the importance of teamwork and how to be more sociable. Basketball has really helped to shape me into the person that I am today. 


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About the Contributor
Kailyn Williams
Kailyn Williams, Sports Editor
Kailyn Williams is a third-year senior member of the newspaper staff and Sports Editor. She is an overachieving perfectionist, who doesn’t like failing. She is a member of the varsity volleyball and softball team and likes to maintain straight A’s.

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    Lora CovingtonJan 19, 2024 at 8:26 pm

    As Justin’s Granny, I’ve always saw in him the potential to be the selfless, responsible, and compassionate human being he has become, I’m so proud of him, and my prayer is for him to keep striving to always remain the sweet and caring young man that he has always been, because these traits will help him in achieving whatever he wants in life❤️