Armwood's Mike Brown makes big gains with loss
SEFFNER — Mike Brown stood in front of his family, friends and coaches Wednesday morning looking sharp in a red tartan vest, matching bow tie and black slacks.
This time last year, Brown would have had a hard time getting in that outfit.
“I was sloppy, a mess,” he said. “All fat and nasty.”
But all that changed last year as Brown shed nearly 90 pounds from January to August. The Armwood offensive lineman was rewarded Wednesday, becoming one of six Hawks to sign national letters of intent when he inked with Southeast Missouri State.
“I had to get all new pants, but it was worth it,” Brown said of his weight loss. “The coaches up there brought me in and said they’d make it feel as close to Florida as they could.”
Brown played center his junior season around 380 and coach Sean Callahan said the weight was too much for Brown’s frame.
“He really was just flopping around out there,” he said. “We needed him to be able to move.”
Callahan approached Brown after the season about losing the weight but the veteran coach was also concerned about something other than football — the rising senior’s well-being.
“We talked about not just the football end of it, but his health,” Callahan said. “That’s just too much for his heart. He bought into it.”
Brown and his mother, Kim, made a family decision to lose weight together. Callahan and the Hawks staff provided the exercise and weight training portion; Mom backed up Brown at home.
“She pushed me and we just stuck together,” Brown said of his mother, who lost 100 pounds during the process. “It was all about portion control, what time we ate and cardio. Once I started losing, the weight just kept burning off.”
Brown said now that salad and fruit have slowly replaced soda and sugar, he expects the changes to remain permanent.
“I don’t even like any of that stuff I used to eat,” he said. “I’m done with it. This is a lifestyle change."
Also signing Wednesday for the Hawks were Tyler Scott (Carson Newman), Justin Manning (Campbellsville), Dedarallo Blue (Toledo), Trevor Laurent (Bethune-Cookman) and Kevin Richardson (Bethune-Cookman).