Clearwater Central Catholic linebacker Caanan Brown wasted no time making his college decision, committing to the University of Virginia during an unofficial visit to the school this week.
“I just loved everything about it,” Brown said Wednesday. “I think the thing that really stood out for me was how genuine everyone was at the school, from the coaching staff on down. They seemed to care about me as a person and there was so much connection that I know they will help throughout my whole process in college.”
Brown had a breakthrough season last year, registering 78 tackles and a team-leading nine sacks as he helped the Marauders advance to the Class 3A state semifinals.
Virginia was the first school to offer Brown. His other offer came from Massachusetts this spring.
In the past, Virginia has had success landing CCC players. Paul Freedman, a former Marauder standout at tight end, played for the Cavaliers and is now with the Cowboys as an undrafted free agent. Freedman visited CCC this spring and talked to Brown about his experience at Virginia.
“(Freedman) wasn’t there to sell me on the school,” Brown said. “He just said he went up there and loved it. I really had a positive vibe from everyone I talked to. This is a school where I would want to be even if I wasn’t playing football.
“I wasn’t really planning on committing this early. It just sort of happened this way. But now that it’s done, it’s a real nice feeling.”