BYU football: Wide receiver Rhen Brown turning heads

Published: Wednesday, Aug. 17 2011 1:00 p.m. MDT

PROVO — Every practice session, there is at least one player who wasn't penciled in as a two-deep contributor who steps up his game. So far this fall, Rhen Brown looks to be one of those players.

There isn't much to distinguish the 5-foot-10, 178-pound Brown at a glance, but he's been able acquire some distinction through his play this fall.

"He's been very progressive in inching his way up and he's a guy we can count on," said wide receiver coach Ben Cahoon of Brown. "He looks like he had a great summer, and so far he's doing a very good job for us."

Brown has seen his share of reps with the first-team offense and appears ready to make a strong case to break the two-deep chart. Most coaches rotate their wide receiver groups, so a spot on a two-deep roster should include plenty of playing time for Brown this coming season.

"That's the goal," said Brown. "Every player wants to play, obviously. I'm just trying to do what they need me to and hopefully the best will become of it."

Brown is now entering his junior season at BYU, so it may just be his time to show forth as a regular contributor.

"I don't know if I've worked any harder this offseason, I think I'm just benefiting now from working hard every offseason," he said. "I think I might be more mentally strong this year, and more confident in what I'm doing. I want to be in the rotation, but even more, I want to do whatever I can to help the team out."

That confidence has been taken note of by Cahoon.

"Players told me that he was someone who really stepped up in the offseason, and it shows," Cahoon said. "He's fast. He runs effortlessly, he runs precise routes, he catches the ball well, and he takes it seriously. He does the little things well and it's been great to see his progress so far this fall because he can help us."

Brown has been able to find a niche for himself as being a speed guy who can stretch the field while running precise routes.

"I'm definitely not as tall as I want to be, so I have to make up for it in different ways," he said. "I have to be fast, so I guess I'm a speed guy for them, but it's all the other small stuff that I'm trying to do better."

BROTHERS? If you were to just show up at practice, without prior knowledge of Rhen Brown and Terence Brown being brothers, you might be a bit incredulous.

Terence Brown might be the biggest player on the team at 6-foot-4, 318-pounds, while his brother Rhen may be one of the smallest.

"It's funny, but every year players come in and don't find out that we're brothers until about six months later," said Rhen. "When they find out, they still don't really believe us. I really don't know why we're so different physically, but we're close and we're happy here at BYU playing with each other."

MISC: The offense struggled again with the passing game. Jake Heaps went just 1-for 5 for 17 yards on a completion to Dallin Cutler. ... Riley Nelson didn't get off a single pass during his series of reps as he was sacked twice. The first sack came from a combined effort of Austen Jorgensen and Jameson Frazier getting to him with Ezekial Ansah accounting for the other one. ... Both Travis Uale and Daniel Sorensen was again held out of practices with Mike Hague and Carter Mees filling in for them with the first-team defense. ... Joe Sampson and Robbie Buckner both got looks with the first-team defense with Preston Hadley and Corby Eason not participating during team drills.

email: bgurney@desnews.com

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