On Monday, November 30 Corbin High School angler Matt Brown signed on to attend classes and fish competitively for Bryan College in Tennessee. He is the first from Corbin to even sign a scholarship to fish at the collegiate level.
“It feels great,” Brown said of the opportunity. “I’m excited to be able to fish in college. It’s a cool thing to think about.”
Brown has accomplished a great deal while fishing competitively at the high school level, and Bryan Head Coach Mike Keen is excited to see what he will have to offer at the next level.
“Matt and I got to talking about a year ago through texts and e-mail, and we found out that we know some of the same people,” Keen said when asked about the events that led to Brown’s signing. “He has actually fished with another young man that we are currently recruiting out of the Knoxville area.”
“We invited him and his family down for a visit to our campus. He liked what he saw, we liked what we saw, so we just made him an offer. I think he’ll be a great fit for us.”
When asked about his hopes for the future, Keen said, “Number one, we want Matt to work hard, study hard, and get a great education. We are a Christian college, so we also hope to help him grow spiritually. Number three, we hope he has a lot of fun on the water.”
The Bryan College fishing team, which is in only its second year of existence, had anglers that qualified to compete for a national championship last year. Keen is hoping that Brown can help the team get back to that stage for the next several years to come.
“I’ve seen his resume, and I know what he’s capable of,” Keen said of Brown. “He is a very accomplished young man, and I believe that he will do very well in college fishing.”
Speaking of Brown’s resume, CHS bass fishing Head Coach Michael Ball said of his star angler, “The kid loves to fish, and he’s going to do well at the college level. He spends all of his time on the water. He really approaches it like a job, and does everything that a young angler needs to do to go to the next level.”
When asked to name Brown’s biggest accomplishment to date, Ball said that would probably have to be qualifying for the BASS national high school team, which he is currently still a member of. That honor may be the most prestigious of his young career so far, but it is just one in a very long list of achievements that this young man has accumulated while traveling all over the country to compete in various tournaments.
When asked what Brown’s signing means for the CHS bass fishing program, Ball said, “It’s great because it shows the kids who are just beginning that they can go to the next level. Matt has set the standard, showing that with effort and hard work you can go to college fishing. Who would’ve thought that could one day be possible?”