Carlon Brown knows a thing or two about being on an underdog team that makes a run down the stretch of a basketball season.
So perhaps he was the perfect player to acquire in a trade, which Idaho did Jan. 2.
Idaho began its season with a 1-12 record, but the Stampede are determined to turn things around. Brown hopes he can be a part of the teams reversal of fortunes.
Obviously, weve dug ourselves a really deep hole, Brown said. But were going to get over that hump.
Brown has some history of helping a team to new highs. He was named the Pac-12 Tournament MVP after leading Colorado to four wins in four days and an unlikely title. The Buffaloes, who were picked to finished 10th in the preseason poll, entered the tournament as the sixth seed.
To date, in my career, thats got to be one of the best moments, the 6-foot-5 Brown said. Being an underdog at that tournament and coming out and pushing my teammates, it was a great run.
Now he wouldnt mind going on a little run with his new team in his first season as a pro. Brown has been doing his part since coming to the Stampede from the Santa Cruz Warriors. Prior to Wednesday nights game his points per game had improved from 5.5 with Santa Cruz to 10.7 with Idaho.
Ive been given the opportunity to play and its been a great experience for me, said Brown, who played his eighth game with the Stampede on Wednesday, a 91-84 win over the Erie BayHawks at CenturyLink Arena. Brown had 13 points and five rebounds in his second straight start.
Idaho coach Mike Peck said Brown has been a vocal player who has added an element of leadership.
Carlons a playmaking guard who can make shots and has great energy, Peck said.
Hes almost like a pinball, assistant coach Barry Rohrssen said. Hes all over the court.
When a team struggles as much as Idaho did early in the season, theres no way it can stand pat.
And the Stampede havent.
I think if you look at all of our moves since training camp, Josh Owens, Solomon (Alabi) and now Carlon, I think theyve all added to the team and made us better, Peck said.
The 7-foot-1 Alabi and the 6-8, 240-pound Owens have given the Stampede a mixture of toughness and length that was sorely missing early in the season.
The coaching staff believes adding Brown to the mix is another step in the right direction.
All our moves have been beneficial, Rohrssen said. Weve explored options, and now weve executed them. Were 3-for-3 with these guys.
GAME NOTES: Justin Holiday led the Stampede (6-15) with 24 points, while Sean Evans had his eighth double-double with 13 points and 11 rebounds. Idaho, which has won five of its past eight games, won back-to-back home games for the first time this season. D.J. Kennedy led Erie (10-9) with a game-high 26 points.
Chris Langrill: 377-6424