PHILADELPHIA — Charlie Brown has only played one season of college basketball, but that won’t stop his coach from putting him among some elite company.
“His work ethic is on a Delonte West level right now,” Saint Joseph’s head coach Phil Martelli said of the 6-6 Brown following a team workout on Wednesday. “Delonte is the guy that he’s most comparable to right now in terms of being in the gym. He had a terrific freshman season, but he’s going off the bounce more now and he’s got more range. He’s also more committed defensively.”
How did a freshman season that saw Brown average 12.8 points and 5.0 rebounds while making over 70 three-point shots get swept under the rug?
“His team only won 11 games,” Martelli said. “No one truly has a great year when your team wins 11 games. Charlie had to do almost everything last year because of the injuries we had last year and if everyone is healthy, he’ll have to do less next year. It’s a unique dynamic.”
The Hawks had three starters — Shavar Newkirk (knee), Lamarr Kimble (foot), and Pierfrancesco Oliva (knee) — suffer season-ending injuries last season. Newkirk is the only one of the three who has yet to be fully cleared.
What is the expectation for this team with everyone back fully healthy and the addition of two impact freshmen in Anthony Longpre and Taylor Funk?
Martelli isn’t sure.
“There’s no way of knowing that because we have no way of knowing what everyone is capable of if everyone is healthy,” Martelli said when asked about his team’s expectations. “We’ve gotten better since the end of last season and we’ve gotten healthier. We’re more skilled and we know we can make baskets. Where will all that lead? We’ll find out soon enough.”
Jon Rothstein has been a college basketball insider for CBS Sports since 2010 and is the lead college basketball columnist for the FanRag Sports Network. He is also the host of the College Hoops Today Podcast via Compass Media Networks, which is available via iTunes. Rothstein is also a regular in-studio correspondent for both WFAN and CBS Sports Radio. He currently lives in Manhattan.