September 2, 2008
Brown finally makes bang for Cats
Of course, there are moments a player will never forget. Just before halftime in Kansas State's romp of North Texas last weekend, wide receiver Lamark Brown had one of those moments. When he turned and jumped as Josh Freeman threaded a six-yard play-action pass down the gut, Brown grabbed the ball with three steps on the cornerback and safety. Then, when the sophomore landed in paydirt for the first time in his career, a rush fell over Brown's body.
First, he tucked the ball under his right arm and raised his left arm and pointed to the cheering K-State fans behind the end zone. Then he swung around and jumped and chest-bumped Brett Alstatt. But he wasn't going to reenact the Cuba Gooding, Jr., moment in "Jerry Maguire." And he sure as heck wasn't going to celebrate like those Green Bay Packers receivers and jump into the crowd ("I might not be on the field anymore," he said). Still, he floated to the sideline, getting pats on the helmet along the way, before he reached head coach Ron Prince.
And, of course, Brown and the crowd of 45,150 at Bill Snyder Family Stadium remembers what happened next. No, Prince didn't rip Brown for living in the moment. He ripped him for an earlier moment, when he dogged it on kickoff return coverage.
On Monday, Brown was still smiling over the scenario and especially his shout-out to the fans.
"I'd been waiting to do that for a while, to tell you the truth," he said. "I wanted to do it last year if I ever got a chance to get into the end zone. It's fun. I love the fans here. I just wanted to let them know that I appreciated them for coming out and cheering us on."
There's a certain bond that develops between some athletes and their fans. There are also those moments when it all starts to click and everything becomes fun again.
Brown might have experienced both in the season opener.
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