A Clearer Picture

Episode 10 – Jack Brown

A one on one interview with Jack Brown 

Clear – Good evening SFL nation, and welcome back to another Monday night episode of A Clearer Picture, the interview series uncovering the stories of the elite SFL talents. Tonight we sit down with Michigan native 7 season veteran and SFL broadcaster Jack Brown. Welcome in Jack!

Brown – Pleasure to be here!

Clear – You joined the league in its ninth season; how did the SFL find you?

Brown – Well I mean, for me at least, it started with a YouTube recommendation. I was watching some YouTube late at night and saw a video from the SFL that was like a BTS tour of the league from 2015. Honestly, when I clicked the channel name I thought it would have been dead but I was wrong! Joined the Discord shortly after and we were off to the races.

Clear – Who is behind Charleston Predators LB Jack Brown?

Brown – Surprisingly enough, a man named Jack Brown! I know I know, shocking. But yeah, I’m 19 years old and currently attending Central Michigan University looking for a career in broadcasting, I have been loosely involved with sports media for a very long while now and I am looking to obviously make it my career. I currently also do Play by Play for the SFL and spend most of my free time (what little there is for a college kid with a part-time job) playing racing games and hoping to do some fledgling sim racing hobby.

Clear – SFL season 9 seems like an awfully long time ago, what was the league like in general, and how did you find your way to Mexico City?

Brown – Oh man, things were different back then. First off, there was no player progression at the time (That was introduced a season later) so you were whatever your team signed you as (for me it was a silver LB). It was, I guess I would say a much smaller and more quiet community however that may have just been the fact I was checking my discord way less back then. As to how I ended up on MXC, as anti-climatically as this sounds, they simply were the first to message me. Ramos slid into my DMs maybe 30 minutes after I joined the server and offered me a spot to play TE. I accepted and he told me that I would be on the field in two weeks. That obviously did not work out for me as the guy who I was set to replace logged on like a day before his contract was set to expire, so we worked out a deal as to where I would replace the outgoing LB instead, safe to say it worked out well for me.

Clear – What was your experience like with the Aztecs, and what was your most memorable moment with the team?

Brown – I was with MXC for 3 1/2, functionally 4 seasons and easily the best memory for me was winning the championship after just 10 games with them. Sometimes I do just randomly remember I won a championship and remember that moment being just one of the many things happening at a point in time when I was completely turning my life around.

Clear – What brought you to Charleston, and what influenced your decision to move?

Brown – Well, MXC and I parted ways after S12 after there were some hiccups that developed mainly dealing with issues I had with progression at the time. So when I was out and about I could have gone anywhere, earlier in the offseason Alan had taken control of the Indianapolis Spitfire and moved them to Charleston and gave them the Predators name. The move attracted some (I personally believe) unwarranted controversy about him stealing the team name from former Seattle owner Crash Combs who was originally going to have his team named the Portland Predators (completely different theming from Charleston). Now I for one am a sucker for a good controversy and after feeling out my options I went with them for S13 onwards to today.

Clear – Around this time, you attended an SFL convention. Can you describe your experience at the convention as well as doing your one on one interview series with leading figures like Houston owner and Hall of Fame inductee Demond Simien?

Brown – Yeah, I went down to Dallas as a 16-year-old kid and I’ll say, it’s pretty damn fun. If you have ever had one of those times where you finally met an online friend in real life for the first time, it’s like that but around 40 or 50 times over. It’s surreal and very fun and if you can find a way to afford it, you should totally do it barring COVID. With the interviews, I was the host of the official SFL Podcast at the time and had built myself to be a notable figure in the league at the time (I guess I still am haha), so when I and former podcast analyst and Florida Owner Max Paul knew we were both going we decided to set up times to interview whoever we came across (mostly owners). I still have people tell me every so often that they have seen those interviews and got to know a lot about the teams which to me is, kind of surreal considering that I do not consider them anywhere near the best content I have ever made.

Clear – What’s been the highlight of your career with Charleston, and can you describe your experience playing for Alan Armatys and the Predators?

Brown – For me, I remember the happiest I was during my time was back in season 14 when we beat Baltimore for the first time as a team. We had gone 4-8 the previous season and were not looking to be the team to beat, did not help that we got obliterated by Vancouver earlier in the season. But then we went out there and edged out one of the best teams in league history and nothing has ever peaked my serotonin during my time here. On the internal side of things, we run ourselves very much like a well-oiled machine. I’m not just the LB, but I am also the Director of Communications for the team. Alan is a man who takes things seriously but with the Predators he still wants us to be happy with the process. Our LR is a bit on the quiet side but that’s because we do not need to be.

Clear – Off the field, you got involved in broadcasting in the 2nd SFLm season and eventually season 16, can you describe your experience behind the mic and what it means to you?

Brown – I broadcasted in High school for the last 2 and 3 quarters years for the school’s radio station alongside doing morning announcements and a whole bunch of other things. So it’s safe to say I like to hear the sound of my own voice. I have always had a fondness for commentary and what it can do for a sporting event on TV. The ability to almost singlehandedly dictate the emotions of the game to a viewer is a power that I want to take advantage of.

Clear – What’s your outlook on the rest of the season for Charleston?

Brown – For this season it is hardcore playoff push time, we have two games to win and to get in, we need to win both and they are against teams that are total trap games. It’s very much a stressful experience and we are pushing hard. These times are always stressful in the SFL but hey, that is why you sign up for these things.

Clear – Looking back at your career so far, what does the SFL mean to you on a personal level, and what is your favourite part about being in the SFL?

Brown – Oh man, ain’t that the big question. To Jack Brown the person, it means a lot. It’s been a fundamental part of my life and has been for a few years now. I can’t think of a day that goes by where I don’t think about the SFL or have it impact my day. It has grown with me and people who have known me for my full time there have seen me grow from a teenager to a young adult and that still is kind of crazy to think about to this day. I have had things and people come and go during that time but the SFL has always been mine. It means a lot to have some sort of stable community who knows who you are and you know will generally treat you with respect. That is one of the two big things that really keep me here. The community and those who make it up, and the opportunities the SFL has given me and hundreds of others during its time.

Clear – What was the expansion application process like going in for the Detroit Blaze?

Brown – Ah the Blaze, still keep that idea around and I always have it on at least the back burner (pun not intended). Well for BJ [Loveless] and I, it was a straightforward, albeit stressful process, we put in our bid and then basically went on a tour of the owners pitching the team to them and asking for their votes, it’s a very weird feeling talking to people who almost ended up as equals. From what I know the Blaze did gain a decent bit of traction and people did like it. Although it sucks we lost out, I am proud of what we did and the fact that the team is still at least somewhat known for a team that did not make it.

Clear – What does the future hold for Jack Brown, both in and out of the SFL?

Brown – When it comes to inside the SFL, well, there are some things lined up but I don’t really wanna go too in-depth into those as to not spoil the fun. Safe to say I will be looking to move upward from where I am now which I already consider a pretty decent position. Same as my goals have always been in this league. Outside is an interesting thing, with the COVID vaccines rolling out here in the United States, there is a certain sense of finally getting to really come into my own as a person, live a little, ya know? Hopefully, I get my degree when I am 22 or 23 and can live my dream as a sports/political broadcaster and do whatever I can to live my full life.

Clear – Thank you very much for your time, Jack.

Brown – No problem!

That concludes another episode of A Clearer Picture. Do you want to be in the next episode? Send Jacob Clear a Discord message and let your story be heard! Have a wonderful week, SFL nation, and I’ll see you next week.