Brown To Join Rankin, Barksdale at HMA

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If you’re looking for a preview of the future as far as Virginia Tech’s men’s basketball program is concerned, be sure to check out head coach Kevin Keatts’ Hargrave Military Academy (VA) in 2010/2011. Hokie commits C.J. Barksdale and Marquis Rankin confirmed in June that they would attend HMA and, earlier this week, shooting guard Robert Brown confirmed that he would be doing the same.

“I think I was the first one of the three that decided to go there, but I was still skeptical about whether or not to leave my family,” said Brown, who was the first prospect to commit to Tech’s 2011 class. “When I heard they were coming too, I thought it would be good for us to develop a connection before going to Tech.

“Plus, Coach Keatts has a great reputation. He has a good rep for putting people in good positions, college-wise. He makes people better students, people and basketball players.”

Brown, who attended East Ridge High School in Clermont, Florida, for the first three years of his high school career, averaged about 25 points per game last season as a junior. From a scoring perspective (he has averaged 20 points per game on the AAU circuit) as well as an all-around perspective, he has been pleased with his AAU performance this spring and summer.

“I’m playing real well. I’ve improved by being stronger and being able to get to the hole a lot better,” said Brown, who says he now stands at 6-6 and weighs 195 pounds. He is playing for the Florida Assault Showtime squad. “I’m working on a pull-up jumper, which is starting to fall. I’ve been happy with my midrange jumper.”

Brown was most pleased with his overall performance at the Wallace Prather Memorial AAU tournament in Atlanta.

“We didn’t do too well as a team, but individually I felt I played the best there,” said Brown. “I was able to score a lot. I played pretty good defense. I was just happy all around.”

The AAU circuit has been a relaxing one for Brown, who committed to Tech in July last year, but he remains focused on the hard court.

“It is really nice having my decision made because I don’t have to impress coaches, but at the same time I can’t play lackidasically because my future coaches are watching